Thursday, October 6, 2011

Moving Through October...

School is well under way. Mac's schedule is crazy hard, and she is learning that it is impossible to do it all; a life lesson which we all must learn, over-and-over. For the next two weeks, the kid will be at school from 7:40am to 9pm at night. It's just a few days till her play, Imaginary Invalid, makes its run, so it is crunch time.

Fi is busy as well, working on her studies, and enjoying wheel classes.  Her teacher is really helping her to move on to a whole new level. She threw a huge bowl this week. I wish I had snapped a picture of her smile, when she was done. Here's one of her recent bowls, which she's still working on.

Art is something this family loves, and its presence is seen throughout our studies.

We are  also starting a Botany unit. Our badly overgrown vegetable garden needs some love and care. Fi and I plan on tackling the weeds, and hopefully getting some winter greens planted by the end of the month. If not, we will at least get the bones in place for next spring.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Etsy Metal Blog Carnnival for October: Let's Talk About Food...

Food; a very complex and frustrating subject for me. From as far back as I can remember, I have loved food in all its varied forms. Both my parents loved to cook, and loved traditional foods from around the globe. Never a Autumn Sunday went by without my father cooking up a pot of Italian vegetable soup, or baking a fresh loaf of crusty sourdough bread. We ate Asian, French, Middle Eastern, Mexican, you name it. My family was unusual, in that we tended to eat more whole foods rather than Wonder Bread and TV Dinners, like most of my friend's families. To this I am very grateful. What I'm not so grateful for, is my struggle with loving food too much. As a kid I was never heavy. My childhood in New York was full of lots of physical activity; walking to school, swimming, biking, just being outside and moving. That all came to a crashing end when the family moved to Atlanta. No one walked in Atlanta. Very few "played" outside, as it was too damn hot or the speeding cars flying through your neighborhood would plow you over. My level of physical activity plummeted to near zero, while my appetite stayed the same. The food down here was so much richer, fattier, and just over all less healthy. Within a week of stepping off that Delta Airlines flight, I was eating my first chicken fried steak with biscuits and gravy. Kiss my lean figure good-bye!

After the birth of my first child, I knew I had to do something. After years of not loving my body, it was beginning to give up on me. I started exercising more, eating better, and feeling good. Then after my second child was born, at the tender age of one, she was diagnosed with Type-1 Diabetes. I learned more about food in a week, then most will in a lifetime. Now we were a low carb family/whole food family; lots of fish, lean meats, veggies, and low sugar fruits, like berries. To add insult to injury, she was later diagnosed at three with Celiac Sprue, an autoimmune disease that attacks the small intestines. My youngest was not the only one to be diagnosed with Celiac, my older daughter was as well. So now we were a low carb/whole food/gluten free family. OMG! What was there left to eat? Well, there was a bunch left, and once again I, along with the rest of the family, embraced eating in a whole new way.

Even with a healthier lifestyle, the damage had been done. All those years of being overweight had taken their toll on my body. In my forty-sixth year on this planet, I've come to the conclusion that I must do something more drastic. As much as I love food, I'm now trying to look at it as fuel, and not as pleasure and comfort, a very hard thing to do. I've started replacing two meals a day with either a green smoothie or a veggie juice. I've cut back on the red wine, and chocolate (one of my believed treats).
I'm hoping this works, as I'm tired of being tired. I want to feel more energy, to recover faster from a workouts, to stop this middle age spread that seems to have reared its ugly head. I will still treat myself, once and a while, to a family favorite. It's just not fall without at least one pumpkin pie or warm bowl of Italian Vegetable Soup. I will still have some home made gluten free pizza with the kids, but just not as often. I need to woo my body back into liking me. I know it will not be an easy thing to do.

So for those nights I'm treating myself to a favorite. I know this recipe will be at the top of my list.

Tom Kha Gai - Chicken coconut Soup
2 cups of coconut milk
6 thin slices of galangal
2 stalks of lemon grass (cut into 1 inch strips and crush with cleaver)
5 fresh kaffir lime leaves (torn in half, not cut)
250 g of boneless chicken
5 tablespoons of fish sauce (naam blaa)
2 tablespoons of sugar
Half a cup of lime juice
1 teaspoon of black chili paste (nam prik pow)
Quarter cup of coriander leaves
5 green chili peppers (I will use red chilis)

Slice the chicken into thin strips. 
Smash lemon grass with the flat side of a chef's knife once and then cut into 1 inch pieces; slice galangal into thin rounds; tear lime leaves into thirds; cut chilis in half.
Heat coconut milk and water in a saucepan for 2-3 minutes. Don't let it boil. Reduce heat to a medium and add lemon grass, galangal, lime leaves, chilies and cook for another 2 minutes, stirring continuously and not letting it boil.
Add chicken strips and cook for 5 minutes, stirring over medium heat, until the chicken is cooked.
Add 2 tablespoons of lemon juice, 1 tablespoon of fish sauce and quarter tablespoon of sugar. stir, and continue cooking for another minute or two/
Transfer to a soup bowl and serve immediately, garnished with fresh corriander leaves.


See what my fellow Etsymetal compadres have to say about food...

1. Inbar Bareket -
2. Victoria Takahashi -
3. Cynthia Del Giudice -
4. kate jones -
5. Twigs and Heather-
6. Nova of Sweden -
7. Beth Cyr -
8. Nodeform -
9. Rebecca Bogan -
10. Panicmama Jewelry -
11. Evelyn Markasky
12. 2Roses:

13. Evelyn Markasky :

Friday, September 23, 2011

Looking for a way out...

Frustrated with the world, with my to-do list, with the lack of time, the rush, the feeling that nothing is ever good enough. For some reason a train ride would feel nice. Unfortunately, I'd have to come back to it all... the never ending rat race.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Summer's End...

 School will be back in session in less than two weeks - I'm not ready. It's too dang hot to do anything... Alas, school cares not for the forecast. We already have a load of theater meetings and events lined-up. Mac will soon be off welcoming the new theater freshmen, and finding her way as a sophomore.

 Fi's second camp session was a hit. A huge improvement from fashion camp. The group made sculpture from found objects, and one of my favorites was their Reliquaries. This was Fi's.

She too is not thrilled to hit the books again, as this was the first year we did not school over the summer.

 I had fun taking pictures each week for art camp at Spruill. The kids do so much amazing work. I still don't understand our culture's lack of support for the arts. It's all football and Dancing with the Stars... BLAH!

I guess now that camp is over, and the grind is just around the corner, the girls and I will try to spend as much time in the pool as possible.

That's if we can stand the hot drive to get to the Grand's pool.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Painful Lessons at Fashion Camp

 Reliving one's childhood through one's child, has to be one of the most painful experiences. Fi was in a fashion camp this week. The group was comprised of 14 girls (ages 11-14). Why did I not see the writing on the wall...? There was one wonderful teacher, and two very sweet, but unskilled helpers. So, they were quickly reassigned to another room, and I was ushered in to take their place; big mistake. The first day went fine, all getting to know each other, and all equally frustrated at the awful sewing machines, which began to die one by one. After the second day, we were down to four machines for 14 kids.
Next nail in the coffin; we start on our model sketches. Fi decided to make her model into a sugar skull. Ugh, most all the girls immediately started to make fun of her and her picture. Talk about peer pressure and conforming to the norm. I found this all very interesting, since they all idolize Lady GaGa, yet exhibited the antithesis of everything she stands for. The isolation of my child had moved into full force, mainly lead by one girl. I'm not sure why she hated my daughter so, but I feared it had to do with the fact that I was in the room. By the end of the week, Fi was totally alone. I finally lost it with two of the girls, and that only made it worse. Fi was crushed, yet she was able to create a wonderful outfit, one of the most complicated in the room. Her dip-dye t-shirt matched her paneled skirt and bag. I was so proud.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011


It's been a while since I posted. Mac finished her first year in the big house; 95 & 96 GPAs for the year. Not bad for a un-socialized "homeschooler". Fi is not far behind. Not sure how much longer she will put up with staying home, though witnessing some of her sister's less than stellar experiences this year, has at least cooled her excitement about giving up the learning at home experience.

It's once again summer here in the south. I've been here since 1978, and I'm over it. Sure, there are some lovely things about the south, but the summer weather is not one of them. Even my flowers are tired. Hopefully my frustration will get my creative juices going again. I need to get back into the studio and bang out my angst on some metal!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Etsymetal's Blog Carnival, for February 2011

This month's topic: what crafts besides working with jewelry and metalsmithing, do you do? What other mediums do you explore? How often do I get to play, and does this other work relate or inspire my metalwork and jewelry design?
 I love all forms of art. I can't remember a time when art was not a part of my daily life -  whether making it or just admiring the works of others. Since both my parents are artists, (very talented ones), I fight a constant battle with finding my own path. I can draw and paint, but I have always frustrated by those mediums. Later I gravitated towards clay. I've dabbled in hand-building, sculpture, and wheel. Unfortunately, I had to give up throwing a few years ago due to a bad back. I still love to work in clay, but now focus on free forms and incorporating clay (via plastic clay) into my jewelry/metal work. 
 I also found fabric arts, while on my journey. I like quilting, again free-form and story quilts from old scraps of fabric. I need more hours in the day! So, instead of trying to make full size quilts, I've switched to making small pieces, often making them into gift bags. I also knit, usually in the winter. That along with bead weaving, have become my waiting in the car, while the kids are in class activities.
Last but not least is photography. Again, I wish I had more time to explore my love of this art form. I do get to do it often, taking pictures of my work, but I don't have the time to truly explore just taking pictures for fun. I love candid photography; capturing people, nature, and life without pretense. There's something about capturing a moment in time, that is magic. 

I've also recently started playing with paper making with my youngest. We took a mini intro class and ever since I've been thinking about how to fit yet another medium into my bag. I'd love to make my own journals with metal accents. So little time, so much I want to do.
 So, do all these other interests relate to or inspire my metal work and jewelry design? YES! All my interest always relate to each other, and I see a common thread through most of them. The real question is, do others see it too?
Check out these other Etsymetal members to see what they have to say about the subject.

Kate Jones - 
Kathryn Cole -
2Roses -
Twigs and Heather -
Erin Austin -
Thomasin Durgin -
Nodeform -
Beth Cyr -
Stacey hansen -
Nina Gibson -
Elizabeth scott -
Evelyn Markasky -
Amanda Conley -

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Sunday, January 16, 2011

3rd Annual Spruill Student & Instructor Jewelry Market

Third Annual
Student & Instructor
Jewelry Market
Sunday, February 27, 2011
11:00am – 5:00pm
Spruill Center for the Arts-Education Center
5339 Chamblee Dunwoody Road
Atlanta, GA 30338
Please join us for this exciting fundraising event
showcasing beginning to professional level jewelry
artists who will sell their unique handcrafted
jewelry to the public.
Selections will include diverse jewelry styles in
precious metals, glass, beads, gemstones, and
more at prices to fit every budget.
Admission is Free!
For directions please visit

Monday, January 3, 2011


This month's Etsymetal Blog Carnival is about New Year's resolutions.  2011 is a blank slate. This will be a year of great change for my family, of which I have no control nor, at this time, know exactly what that change will be. If I have any resolutions, the first is to be open to whatever happens, not fight nor fear, but look for the positive in the motions, in the experience. I've spent my life being a planner, and for the first time I have no plans, no trajectory... In some ways it's extremely freeing, and in others, terrifying.

Check out what other Etsymetal artists have to say about their New Years's resolutions...