"The proper use of imagination is to give beauty to the world..." Lin Yu-T'ang

Friday, November 9, 2012

Carmel By The Sea, Part 2

Here's a few more pictures of the way-too-many I took of the ocean in Carmel.

So beautiful.
Walking barefoot in the sand,
listening to the crash of the ocean,
smelling and tasting the salty air,
watching the seagulls soaring overhead
and the waves come in and out,
feeling my breath,
and I think:
this is the way the earth breathes.
And I feel at home, complete and whole.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Carmel By The Sea, Part 1

Carmel By The Sea (sometimes just referred to as Carmel) is a small town with lots of European inspired architecture. The top three photos are from Secret Garden, the most delightful little garden space designed in an alleyway next to Pilgrim's Way Bookstore. Carmel draws lots of tourism from around the world and it's easy to see why. The nature in Carmel and Monterey to the north and Big Sur to the south is just astounding. Relaxed and located in one of the prettiest places right by the ocean, Carmel is a city steeped in the arts. In the early 20th century, many artists, literary writers, poets, photographers and actors came to Carmel to help establish the Artists Colony (video). The ocean here makes my heart go pitter-patter and I think the beach in Carmel is one of the best.

Monday, November 5, 2012

On the needles...

Slowly knitting over the past couple of months has turned this...

into this! A couple of months ago, I ordered some Madeline Tosh Merino Light yarn in the fabulously rich Victorian Gothic colorway and began knitting my first sweater. Actually I knitted this sweater a couple of years ago, but this is the first with sleeves. I've been wanting to knit a sweater for some time and this autumn seemed a perfect time. I truly love knitting. I gives my mind something to focus on and pay attention to, and yet for me it becomes quite meditative and soothing. I'm a little farther than the photo above shows, having almost completed the hood, when I ran out of yarn. Argh. If you know anything about Madeline Tosh you know that because her yarn is all hand dyed, it can sometimes be a while to obtain. Ugh. I was so excited to finish my sweater, but it will have to wait until I get more yarn.

Today is day 5 of Art Every Day Month. I worked in my art journal and hopefully my pages will be ready to share tomorrow, if not then, since I will be out of town for a short while, then by Thursday for sure.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Pumpkin Lattes in the Crockpot

It's so fun to try new things. It's especially fun if those things are inexpensive, decadent, make you feel luxurious and are easy to make yourself.  Today, I tried this recipe for homemade Pumpkin Lattes in the crockpot and they turned out delicious! So easy. I got up early, fed the cats (who seem to be starving lately--I don't need an alarm clock any more) put everything into the crockpot and left it to go do my yoga practice, meditation and reading. Two hours later, when the other two finally arose, we had fresh, hot Pumpkin Lattes and everyone loved them! I will definitely be making them again and again...

I tried making these on the stove top as well but using the crockpot really makes the difference as it allows the milk and coffee to really absorb the spices and vanilla. I skipped on the whipped cream and extra cinnamon on top, but you can go fancy if you want.

Below, I've reprinted the recipe. I'll be trying more of Stephanie's crock pot recipes--especially the holiday ones. I really like the idea of saving some time and energy (A crockpot uses approx. .02 of energy) while still making really delicious food.

Pumpkin Latte
(Makes 2)
2 cups milk 
2 T canned pumpkin 
2 T sugar 
2 T vanilla (not a typo. it asks for tablespoons) 
1/2 tsp pumpkin pie spice (or: 1/4 tsp cinnamon, 1/8 tsp cloves, 1/8 tsp nutmeg, and a teeny tiny pinch of ground ginger)
1/2 cup brewed espresso or 3/4 cup strong brewed coffee
garnish with whipped cream (optional)

Add the coffee/espresso and milk to the crockpot. Whisk in the pumpkin, spices, sugar, and vanilla.
Cover and cook on high for 2 hours if everything is cold. Whisk again.
Ladle into mugs, and garnish with whipped cream and additional cinnamon.

**If you're visiting from AEDM, welcome! I will be posting artwork as well. My philosophy and experience is that any kind of creativity contributes to my artwork, therefore, I focus on being creative each day, whatever that means on any particular day. Thanks for visiting!

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Inspiration Saturday

 Really enjoying this song

How about breakfast with one of these?

My affirmation lately: "Something is now manifesting for me in totally satisfying and harmonious ways."

Have you heard Thandie Newton's Ted Talk?

Oh yes, this is luscious.

Nothing is more important than self-care. Nothing. Check out this list of 55 gentle ways to take care of you. Or make your own list (even better because nobody knows what you need like you do) and share a few of your favorite items in the comments below.

For those of you in the path of the storm, real or metaphorical, take good care and be safe.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Nurture Your Kind Heart

8X8 collage, paper, acrylic, ink, graphite on canvas. Contains antique key, vintage international postage stamps and rhinestones.

"When you begin to touch your heart or let your heart be touched, you begin to discover that it's bottomless, that it doesn't have any resolution, that this heart is huge, vast, and limitless. You begin to discover how much warmth and gentleness is there, as well as how much space."
~Pema Chodron

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Planted Like A Tree

Hand cut paper and acrylic on canvas.  8X8. 

Stay planted like a tree. 
Let the winds blow through you. 
If you must bend, then bend. 
Feel the breeze through your leaves. 
Stand. Still. 
Stand. Strong.
Stand. Proud.
Stay planted like a tree.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Endurance is necessary

There are days
that are to be endured
rather than lived.
Their only purpose:
to test us
or to strengthen us
or both
or maybe they have no purpose
at all.

On those days,
those difficult days,
we must remember
for while it is important
to handle the good
days with grace
and gratitude,
it is even more
important to handle the
difficult ones with

Friday, October 12, 2012

Inspiration :: Make Good Art

I recently saw this video of Neil Gaiman giving a commencement speech. What he shares resonated with the truth that lives inside me...even as I struggle to breathe it, think it, and live it, everyday. That struggle is the Truth of the creative life I've chosen and that so many of us have chosen. So I wanted to share it here because honest truth-telling and inspiration from others who are living it is helpful. Make good art.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Big Sur and the Henry Miller Memorial Library

Gorgeous Big Sur, I will come and visit you for any excuse I can find. You are lovely in every way and my heart is a willing captive to your infinite charms.

Yesterday, we had a wonderful opportunity to drive Daysha down to the Henry Miller Memorial Library for the Rookie Roadtrip Meetup. Oh, twist my arm, I said to her when she asked. I love the Henry Miller Library. While she hung out, we browsed the books and the art, sat outside on the deck and sipped tea. It was so relaxing and inspiring. If you have never been, it's really a must do/see. In addition to the library/bookstore, they host films and music and bring in lots of great talent and a cool crowd.

photo from

I absolutely love this poster! Bela Lugoi as Dracula was my favorite character when I was growing up. I loved to watch all of the monster movies. And of course, who can compare to Phillip Glass? This poster is from a few months ago...I would have loved to have seen this.


Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Wildlife at the Park

There's a beautiful park near me that has an abundance of wildlife, especially birds and waterfowl. Although sometimes challenging and requiring lots of patience, there are plenty of opportunities to get some nice shots.  (And oh how I yearn for a nice DSLR camera...)

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Art Journal: June

A recent page from my art journal.

Sometimes the worries of life can get the best of us. 
Sometimes life requires more than we have to give at the moment. 
Sometimes the challenges that we face are steep and the paths are rocky. 
Sometimes we lose our footing. 
Sometimes we experience the pain of life as well as the joy. 
Sometimes it's easier (and more fun!) to dream of being somewhere else. 
We do what we must. 
We persevere. 
We keep going. 
Choosing to stay present.
Taking one step at a time.
And still dreaming...
peace. ♥

Sunday, June 17, 2012

The Farmer's Market: A Festival of Color

I love shopping at our local farmer's market. Everything is organic and fresh. It's a feast for the eyes and soul as well as the body; a festival of color. Buckets abundantly filled with cut flowers; bins, boxes and baskets overflowing with luscious fruits and vegetables; and tables of fresh baked goods, fish, honey, sorbet and coffee. Tantalizing smells of fresh produce waft through the air, alive with the energy of those shopping and sampling. There's  a bit of an "old world" feel, similar to the feeling I had when I shopped the open air markets while visiting Paris and other European cities. It feels good to shop at the farmer's market. It feels good to buy fresh, local, organic food and support the farmer's who grow it and make it available. I know I'm getting quality, healthy, fresh, organic food and I love the eye candy; there's never a shortage for great photo taking. It's a highlight of my week.