Sunday, July 29, 2007

Showering again!~and a Little Announcement

After a few weeks...(okay, 2 weeks, 3 days, 4 hours and 57 minutes), but whose counting?..the shower is done!! Here are some photos (sorry, "white" is a little difficult to see and photograph).

Now that the shower, tub surround with trim, floor (see photo) and toilet are all in....the only thing left is the
sink. And that might take a few more weeks because my husband will be building a dry sink/cabinet for our bathroom vanity, but it will be worth the wait!

~*~*~*~*~*~Little Announcement~*~*~*~*~*~

Please check in this Wednesday, August 1st. I will be hosting a "Pear Tree Primitives Gift-Away" starting on that day to celebrate the opening?, launching? (that sounds dangerous, lol) of my website, and will give you more info. on Wednesday!

Friday, July 27, 2007

Weekend Wishes

It's Friday already! ...and we have been so busy working on the bathroom remodel I didn't post a "Passed Painter".....but the bathroom is looking great! :)
One and a half walls of the bead board are up and the shelf unit in place!
It's hard to take a good photo of it. It's very white (and clean!) and we are extending the board all the way to the ceiling to protect the walls. The problem with the previous shower was water getting behind the tub surround. So, we hope to finish the shower this weekend, ( more bead board, trim, caulking, drying, etc...whew!)

Wishing everyone a wonderful weekend! And hopefully you are doing something a little more fun!

Monday, July 23, 2007

Another "Unexpected Surprise"

My weekend of unexpected surprises didn't end on Sunday! In today's mail I received another gift from a friend. This sweet friend makes beautiful hand-dids ( I own a few of her beautiful creations already!) and today she sent me two lovely clove sachets. These are made with the prettiest vintage fabric and smell, Oh-So-Yummy!
They are tied with a sweet green ribbon and a cute little straight pin with a speckled egg tip was on top.
(sorry about the photos, my "good" camera died, but I still have my "old" one....just 2 pixels!)

And that's not all...also in the box were some quail eggs with bits of moss!
Deena was so thoughtful to send me these goodies just because I was away when there was a bird swap sign up with the girls on The Primitive Gathering.
(See Lana's post:Just a Little Peep).

Wonder what I'm going to find in my mailbox tomorrow?????....probably bills! and back to reality. **Sigh**

Sunday, July 22, 2007

Unexpected Surprises

This weekend was sprinkled with a few fun surprises. My husband "almost" finished the bathroom and the placing of a new tub in a VERY tight spot went fairly smoothly. And after the plumbing was in leaks!
(I'll post photos later in the week, my camera died on Saturday. I guess that was another "unexpected surprise" too!..but not a fun one.)

He also surprised me with a new toilet. I know that may not be the most exciting news to some, and it's not suppose to make a girl's heart go a-flutter,but... to have a nice, "right-out-of-the-box", brand new, "no- one's -ever- used" toilet makes MY heart skip a beat! We had looked at several and he knew what I liked, but we were saving our pennies! So, this was a complete surprise!
(sorry to put these two surprises in the same post...
but they were both "Unexpected"!)

And on Saturday, the mailman knocked on my door and handed me a mailing tube. I thought to myself, "Hmmm, I didn't order anything. What could this be?" After reading the mailing label, I knew it was for me, but I still didn't remember ordering anything! I opened it and inside was the very special gift from a very sweet person. This was so unexpected and thoughtful of her, I had to call her right away and thank her!
What a generous thing for her to do! Elaine sent me a print of The Hobby Horse, Unknown Artist, (© 1840).

To me this was almost like visiting the American Folk Art Museum, and staying in the 18th and 19th century drawings and paintings wing until they kicked me out! I would love to see primitive portraits in person someday. But, now I have a print of an original for my home! And to see the detail in this painting is amazing. Thank you Elaine!

Friday, July 20, 2007

"Passed" Painter of the Day

This Friday's painter is Susan Catherine Moore Waters. She lived from 1823-1900. At the age of 15, Susan attended a girl's seminary with her younger sister and to help pay for schooling and their expenses, Susan provided drawings for the Natural History class.
At 17, she married Mr. Waters, and didn't draw for a few years. But in 1843, after three years of marriage, Susan began her career as an intinerant portrait artist. She traveled in the areas of southern New York and northern Pennsylvania. Here is the portrait of "The Lincoln Children" ©
1845. ..aren't they lovely? A sweet customer of mine sent this notecard to me made from the original portrait that hangs in the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.
She would often stay with the family of her portrait sitters until the portrait was finished and move onto the next family who had hired her talents. Her work was done on available materials, such as linen, cotton, or mattress ticking!

And just as Erastus Salisbury Fields, Susan was painting portraits when the daguerreotype

was invented. When the requests for painted portraits dwindled, she and her husband started a photography studio and took photos until the
mid-1850's. Since she owned the studio, she had her picture taken, (see upper left photo).
After they "retired", Susan began painting again, but this time, instead of traveling, she painted beautiful pastoral scenes and still lifes for the Victorian home.

References and links:

Thursday, July 19, 2007

"The" Bathroom Remodel ~ Update

It has been a long week of bathroom remodeling and along with that comes frustration when plumbing doesn't go as planned. But, as home improvement plumbing jobs go, we've been blessed with few far!
My sweet husband has tried to find everything on my wish list for this bathroom and has made a shelving unit (with a bead board back) that will be inserted into the shower tub surround. Here is a photo of it....he had to rebuild the wall's frame to fit it in, and another photo of the new plumbing.

He also surprised me with a bead board product he found for the tub surround!! I can't tell you how excited I am about this! (and yes, I won't even mind cleaning all those groves!) We have been checking, researching, and pricing all sorts of materials for a tub surround and I had my heart set on bead board (at a reasonable costs), and this is the perfect thing!

So, next will be the flooring (ready and waiting in the garage) and then putting in the tub, wallboard and tub surround.... hopefully all this sounds so "easy" when I type it out! :)

Saturday, July 14, 2007

New Offerings

This month The Primitive Gathering is having a "Christmas in July" theme. I've made a few
Christmas items...which, by the way was difficult to do when it is 104 plus degrees outside!

Please follow this link to the site:

The Primitive Gathering

and while you are there please take a peek at all the other wonderful items offered by a talented group of ladies.

I've also finished a portrait, "just because"! Just because I found this wonderful portrait for inspiration and had to paint it! Here is a photo of my little berry picker:She is now on American Folk Art

Friday, July 13, 2007

"Passed" Painter of the Day

This Friday's "passed" painter is Erastus Salisbury Fields. (1805-1900) Wow! He lived quite a long time. When Erastus was 19, he worked in the portrait studio of Samuel F.B. Morse in New York City for 3 months. This was all the "formal" training he had, and for most of his life he lived and painted in Massachusetts.
He must have had quite a bit of natural talent because he was in demand and as a result, he developed a portrait technique that allowed him to paint half a body a day, and did quite well with it. These portraits were priced at $4.00 a sitting and his "short-cuts", like black dots over white to show lace, and sharp features that "resembled" the subject (like pointy ears), allowed him to paint quickly, and please his customers. Here are two examples of the half-body technique, (Mr. and Mrs. Pearce© 1835), and I think I would have paid $4.00 for him to paint my matter how pointy he made my ears!
In 1839 the daguerreotype was invented and became very popular. This invention put a lot of portrait artist out of work because people wanted an authentic image of themselves, not an artist's interpretation. However, Erastus tried to use this to his advantage. He offered portraits painted of the likenesses of the photographs! This business angle dwindled in enthusiasm and demand....have you seen a vintage photo? They don't smile and everyone looks sad. Can you imagine what a painting of lifeless looking sad people would look like? :)
Erastus decided to start a new painting venue and began painting biblical and historical subjects. He made painting his life's career and seemed to be a man of progress, accepting changes along the way and having those changes work to his advantage.
Kind of a "When life gives you lemons, make lemonade" philosophy of life!

Treasures of American Folk Art, Beatrix Rumford and Carolyn Weekley© 1989 (images)

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Back at the Cottage

"Mid pleasures and palaces though we may roam,
Be it ever so humble, there's no place like home."
John Howard Payne
US actor & dramatist (1791 - 1852)
We've just returned from a family reunion. It was nice to see, catch up, and laugh with everyone. My boys enjoyed seeing their cousins and visiting the Pacific ocean. Too cold to actually swim, but walking along the shore looking for pebbles and sand dollars was enough. Here are a few photos from our trip...

The first day was spent at Mason Lake in Shelton, WA. There was swimming, a BBQ and a paddle boat that our dog enjoyed!

The next day was spent at Westport, WA. There is a whaler's museum and a shipyard full of boats. While we were there, the tall ships that are actually manned by a trained crew were docked and we were able to take a tour.

The rest of the day was spent on the Pacific Ocean strolling a picking up pebbles and sand dollars.

After service on Sunday
the family gathered for lunch and the nice weather allowed for outdoor dining.

Our trip home was fun too. We saw a stern-wheel riverboat going down the Columbia River,

we stopped at the Multnomah Falls and hiked up a ways to view it at different levels. This is one of my husband's favorite places and it was the perfect day to visit. It was a fast trip , packed with activity. . . and lots of memories. And now it's back to reality and LOADS of laundry!

Thursday, July 5, 2007

Angels for Brianna Benefit Auction

We will be attending a family reunion this week....I'll be back with lots of photos to post (if everyone cooperates and lets me take their picture!)

Please consider bidding for an angel starting this Sunday. Some artists have given a sneak peek of their angels on their blogs, here are two friend's angels I've seen and love Elaine's...and

The following is a letter from the caring ladies who are heading up the auction:

Artists from several facets of the art community have come together to donate angel themed artwork that will be auctioned off as part of a silent auction starting on Sunday July 8th and ending on Saturday July 14th. This auction is being held to honor the memory of a lovely girl named Brianna, whose life was cut short from a disease called MDS. Brianna was diagnosed with MDS in October of 2006, and fought the battle of her life for 8 short months. Unfortunately she lost the battle on June 15th 2007, but her spirit lives on, and she is a reminder to us all to cherish each day that life brings, and to love those closest to us with all of our hearts.

Iva Wilcox, Brianna’s mom, is a talented part of the art community, and this is how we’ve all come to know and love Brianna….through Iva’s beautiful stories and photographs of her daughter. The money collected from the auction will be used to help cover the funeral and medical expenses incurred by the family, and to fund a wonderful program that Brianna started at her high school called the National Art Honor Society. This group, whose primary focus is to promote artists and their work at the high school level, was something that Brianna was passionate about, and she had so many plans for the group that she wasn’t able to put in place due to her illness. Our hope is that the proceeds will help get the group off to a wonderful start this fall, and that she will be an inspiration to other young artists to pursue their talent, and realize their dreams.

I am proud to help promote and support this fabulous event, and I hope you will join us in bidding on an angel or two of your choice, and bidding high to help raise some much needed money for this family, and to honor Brianna’s memory. All of the angel artwork you’ll see is completely handmade by each artist, signed and dated, and will come with a special tag as a reminder of this event. We as artists were moved by Brianna’s story, and all of us felt compelled to do something to help her family in their time of need, in a way that Brianna would have loved. This is why the auction was formed, and we want her memory to live on, as she does now with the angels above.

Thank you!

To read more about Brianna please visit;

Monday, July 2, 2007

A Week of Art Class

"Every artist dips his brush in his own soul, and paints his own nature into his pictures."
Henry Ward Beecher Proverbs from Plymouth Pulpit, 1887
US abolitionist & clergyman (1813 - 1887)

My older son took an Art class this past week and really learned a lot. The class was not about finger paints and playing with clay (which I think I would have enjoyed!), but rather an intensive art class for his age level. There were 5 students that spent 2 and half hours each day learning about shading, perspective, how to mix colors, how to work with oil sticks, charcoal and watercolor.
Here is a photo of my son on the last day of class (looking less than thrilled that I brought my camera), and his teachers.

The class was held at a local Art gallery Spotlight Gallery
and his teachers were professional artists who sell through this gallery:Anne
and Joyce.

According to my son, one teacher was carefree and wanted you to have your own style and the other was a little more strict in her thoughts on art and how it should be taught. So, it sounds like they made a balanced team!

They studied trees and drew landscapes~ keeping detail and depth in mind, they drew from a still life and they drew live subjects,~ other members of the class as well as the teachers. So they had a varied range of experience in drawing this week. Each drawing then was used in a painting. The one he was most proud of is his watercolor...(something he needs to teach me to do! I've never tried it.)

The last day of the class they worked on shading and each student and teacher took at turn as the model again. The teachers drew a shading of each student, so they each had a professional portrait to take home.
He really enjoyed his week and would like to take another one!...maybe there will be a parent /child class we could take together!