Thursday, June 8, 2017

Thornton Burgess and More

 On our way home from our gallery weekend trip, childhood friend Lugene and I stop at The Country Store in Craigville, and Green Briar Nature Center in Sandwich.

Green Briar is a home Thornton Burgess used to hang out at as a child. Thornton was a famous author   of children's books in the 1920's. It is said his popularity back then was comparable to Sesame Street of today.

His stories were syndicated in news papers from coast to coast. Toys, puzzles, games and dolls were some of the products produced under his name.
 In the back of the house is the amazing Green Briar Jam kitchen. Painted in it's original color, the kitchen with 10 hot tops still produces jam to this day.

Best of all you can get a group of friends together and a teacher will help you make your own jam! Now wouldn't that make a great ladies party?
 Here sits Lugene on the front porch of his great homestead. I LOVE the door.

There are also trails to walk and garden's to tour. Located on 6A in Sandwich. Worth the trip!

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

FAN Gallery Show

Erica, Christine and Judith top picture. Linnea and Christine, bottom center
The Freelance Artist Network that I started in 1985 is still going strong! Thirteen artist members are exhibiting at the Falmouth Art Center June 2-30th. Enjoy a variety of art from, painting with tissue paper, 3-D cut paper, oil, acrylic and water color paintings, children's book illustrations and more. Check out the center for hours at:

Sandy Valpey Cordts FAN member and exhibitor, booked the gallery. Susan L Harte designed the postcard.

Erica Szuplat, Sandy Valpey, A. Michele, Linnea Leeming, Christine Hannon and myself, labeled  the cards, books and hung the show last Thursday
The opening was very well attended. I liked this display of black and white outfits with cut paper artist Susan Novich from FAN on left, and the most fabulously dressed lady between us!

 In the small pictures are: myself with my tissue paper paintings, High school friends of mine, Lugene and Michael, Sandy Valpey Cordts with Executive Director, Suzy. and Fan member and exhibitor Carol Way Wood. 

For the demo part of the evening, Sandy explained how she creates her architectural renderings to an engaged crowd. And I showed kids and adults how to color with aqua pencils and water filled brushes.  (A. Michelle who spent hours hanging the show, is pictured coloring at the far right of the coloring table).

Some kids colored, but mostly adults! My coloring books, posters, and DIY greeting cards will be on sale at the gallery all month long. Check them out on if you can't get to the gallery.

Fabulous food was brought by FAN members. The most exotic snack were the little boiled and salted crispy crabs brought by member and exhibitor Susan Medyn.
Pictured here are some of the artfully painted and colored book marks that were colored at the opening.

Other FAN artists exhibiting but not pictured above are: Lesley Breen Withrow, Nicole Tamarin, Mary Beth Cryan and Erica Campanella.

 The night Ended with my BFFs at Sea Food Sams. Clockwise from bottom left: Sandy, Lugene, Corey and me.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

A rainy day craft with company!

 What started as a sunny afternoon turned into a downpour! My dear friends Mairead and Fiona had come over to take Lula belle for a walk (I'm still in a foot cast...not walking). Once they were at least a 1/2 mile away the skies opened up and all three came back soaked!

 Good sports that they are, they toweled themselves off , and we all sat down to color (one of my favorite things that I can easily do with my foot elevated).

We used aqua pencils that were activated with special  brushes that have a water reservoir built in. The flow...always perfect.

The chicken cards all came out so different and vibrant. By the time they were finished the sun had returned and my damp pals walked back home.

Check out my Chicken Card DIY set at my Etsy Store.

Sunday, May 7, 2017

Food Truck Festival!

Second Annual Food Truck Festival at the Holliston Historical Society was held today to benefit Holliston's American Legion.

My Dad "Babe" John Johnson was honored as the oldest living World War 2 Veteran in Holliston. Babe has lived his entire life in Holliston and is a well known character in town. He's 96 years young!

The Food Truck Festival included about 8 traveling kitchens that served a variety of menus. Last year, over 1,000 people attended this fun-filled event. I'd say even more people this year!

A great event, and the weather was perfect!
 Babe's son and wife stood by him as he received several documents honering his service in the war.  Clockwise: Steve Bradford-Head of the American Legion. Carolyn Dykema- State Representative for the Middlesex district,  Chairman Kevin Conley who interviewed Babe says a few words about Babes history, and Liz Turner Greendale the clerk from Town hall (who has known Babe since she started working there) shares some kind words.

It all ended with the crowd singing God Bless America.  Babe has a great singing voice and could be heard above the crowd!
Top right: Friends and family to cheer him on included, Sandy, Bill, Michael and Dottie.

His son escorted "our man of the hour" to and from the event in Babes beloved 1938 Ford.

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Foot Surgery and how to Kill Time

A few weeks ago I went to foot doctor's office expecting to get a cortizone shot, and walked out with a surgery date! I had a Weil ostotomy to repair my metatarsal/Friebergs. All I can tell you is my second toe stopped bending and it was becoming impossible to walk with out pain.

Recovery estimate:  6-8 weeks. WHAT? No walking the dog. No driving, shopping Ack!
My neighbor Annie gave me this great box of things to do after surgery when you can't get up, so I would not be bored.

The first three days I slept away on drugs and then boredom started to creep in. Here is my first task: Start a journal of your recovery. The next random draw was post your journey. So here it is!

Lula belle has given up asking me to take her for a walk.

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Self Portraits Spring 2017

These adorable, funny, clever, detailed, simplified versions of self portraits done by kids K-5th grade are the highlight of my school presentations. This week I visited St. Mary's Academy- Bay View in Rhode Island. The girls were a wonderful well behaved talented group.
They came up with lots of different looks. Checkout the hairstyles with all the adornments. Lovely lips and rosy cheeks.
 Eyelashes, Eyebrows and heads in all sizes. A beautiful array of girls. A wonderful day was had by all at Bay View! Special thanks to the talented art teacher, Mrs. Flanigan, who arranged my visit and prepared the supplies for our busy day.

Saturday, March 25, 2017

The School House SHOP HOP!

Top right & bottom lt:Red Barn in Merrimac. Bottom rt.: Bunkhouse Quilt shop in Lyndeborough.
 Oh my goodness what a fun day. I have heard of these shop hops were a handful of shops sorta put on a party and attendees flock from shop to shop. but never been on one. I was up at 6 am and ready to ride with my quilting club friends to New Hampshire. To start with we all signed up and purchased our tickets ahead of time. We received a useful turquoise messenger bag with directions and a treasure hunt.

At each shop we got a free square of fabric, a quilt pattern, and chances at raffles. Plus free brunch, lunch or desert according to the time of day. Also, almost every shop had a demonstration going on. I learned lots of new techniques. So many fabulous quilts and inspiration! The pin wheel pattern above was one of the giveaway instructional. I LOVE it! But I would make it in my colors.
Top lt.: Daniel's.Top right & bottom lt:Quilted Threads in Henniker. Bottom rt.: Cobblestone Quilts in Townsed.
 Had we know there would be so much to eat we probably would not have stopped to eat at Daniel's in Henniker near the Quilted Threads (one of my favorite shops for their choices of bright colors). But this eatery was lovely with a view of the water and the falling SNOW! What snow??
At the Bunkhouse we spied this cheater quilt patterned bag that I had to have. Decided the pattern was to hard so I just got the fabric. Then at our next shop The quilted Crow, They were giving away a EASY travel tote pattern. So I am now ready to make a tote...and more cloth hen pincushions of course.