Sunday, December 06, 2009

Sunday Morning

Dis my kitty...

Ms. Stella O'Houligan. She is 14. After she spent the morning chasing Scrappie, following me in the backyard & noshing on her special food she took a last look outside & saw clouds, and wind and decided it was a day best left for napping. So we are all in; warm; cozy; quiet. I'm busy sewing and Ms. Stella was kind enough not to move when I took, the umpteenth picture of my beloved, this morning.

I didn't think she would mind considering she was fast asleep; as I neared her I could hear her purring which tells me she knows I'm there but she didn't flinch. Just sort of cracked one of her luminescent green orbs and kept right on dozing. Ahhh, it's good to the be the Queen isn't it Ms. Stel? xo

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Fun Blog to View

It's called "My Parents Were Awesome" and it has great photos like this one (my favorite so far~aren't they just the cutest!) If you get the chance; check it out here.

Just looking at markers of the era's like clothing; colors; hairstyles is totally awesome!

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Our Recovering Patient

It's Sunday morning. Miss Jenga woke me bright and early to tell me she had an important date & as she'd all ready missed Friday & Saturday she WASN'T going to miss today too! "GET UP! Take this conflabdulated thing off me so I can go meet Ra! He's out there waiting!" At this she even gave me some kitty muffins on my arm to hurry things along.

As her penthouse is high, I was skeptical about letting her jump & climb up there in her 'tender' condition but I can assure you; SHE had no problem at all and once there, immedately sat down to take a leisurely bath all round with those giant velvet paws and purred so loudly I could hear her from across the room. I mention her paws alot; they are milk chocolate on top but when she opens them they are semi webbed and all dark chocolate underneath. Yummy!

All of you who donated can feel secure in knowing that you helped out in the most 'pawsome' way possible & this little lady (*& me too) are purrrrrrever grateful! Her stones are gone; she's able to urinate finally which for her I'm sure was pure bliss! And she now has special food *Prescription diet c/d* that's really no more expensive than the regular premium cat food she was on. She will have a check up in a week.

As some of you asked; our cat Ms. Stella O'Houligan had the same problem the same day! I had to take them both in to the vets which was quite fun~NOT! Ms. Stella gets really carsick with fluids leaking from both ends no matter how short the distance & she is so loud that you'd think she was being skinned alive in that carrier!

Neither Ms. Stella nor Miss Jenga really like either other that much so keeping them in the same examining room apart from each other was tricky but luckily they were so occupied with where they were they didn't have much time for aggressive behaviour.

Stella ended up having crystals (which is different from stones) and hers were aided along by a shot (something they give horses & dogs to reduce inflammation in the bladder) and her diet food changed immediately to the canned c/d (something I can't get Jenga to eat at all!) She came home with pain meds as did Jenga that day, it was rather fun going from room to room dosing narcotics and watching each of them get all relaxed & trip out on these stupid tiny moths we seem to have been inundated by! *we've since found the moths source & wiped them out* The reason I couldn't foot the remainder for Jenga myself was that Stell's bill was nearly $400 and that sort of wiped out our 'Emergency Cat Funds' savings.

So again I say, THANK YOU!! to all who donated. Each one of you that has provided me with an address will receive a special tree ornament this year that I'm making (18 of them so far) and for those larger donations; I'm making your art starting today and those will be going out over the next couple weeks.

It's been my honor to take care of this special girl and watch her come through this with all her big giant purrs intact. She requested I not embarass her by photographing her bare tummy parts so here you have her.

Thanksgiving week indeed!!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Update S.O.S.

I am truly speechless!

GREAT NEWS!!! Jenga's Surgery is scheduled for this Friday! From my blog post yesterday and the power of the web via Tweets, re-tweets & Facebook Jenga has received $259.00!!! That coupled with the generous donation from her prior owner of $400.00 puts us nearly there!

I can't thank all you of enough for the generosity of your hearts & pocketbooks! You truly all will have done something remarkable for our little girl & I KNOW she'll be so happy after her surgery (well, not the part with the 'cone of shame') to be able to stretch out on the bed & play chase in the house again and be all chirpy!

Thank you again for everything!!!

Next week I shall be compiling the list of things I get to make & send out. I'll be emailing those of you that donated but didn't leave your physical address to receive your art!

Meeeyaow! Tonight we rest..

Tuesday, November 17, 2009


A quick update on the kittens first! We gave them to MeoowzResQ here in Orange County who rehomes kittens & they have all found loving homes as of this writing!

Now for more serious news and an artful proposition...

Our foster cat Jenga had to have a toe removed which involved many return trips to the vet for bandage changes, etc... This travelling didn't agree with her at all and she has developed stones in her bladder. They are too large for her to pass them so she will need surgery.

The surgery needs to take place as soon as possible as right now she's urinating blood and I can tell this causes her great pain even with the pain medication I give her every 8 hours.

The surgery will cost $723.00 to $782.00. Bengal Rescue said they couldn't pay all of that as their resources are tapped in aiding 45 cats from a Lancaster cattery. I contacted her previous owner and she has graciously volunteered to pay $400.00. I'd like to raise some additional funds to help save this cat's life.


First! Any and all donations no matter how small will be heartfully accepted! Every penny counts!

So for donations from $1.00 to $5.00 You will get the satisfaction of knowing you helped save a life and a personal thank you note from Jenga.

For donations of $6.00 - $12.00 you will receive one pack of my hand made(5x7)cards *see here

For donations of $20.00 you will receive an 8x10 frameable art quilt in any colors you choose!

For donations of $30.00 or more you will receive an 10x12 frameable art quilt in any colors you choose!

For donations of $40.00 you will receive on of my Catnip quilts suitable for your own feline or as a gift! *see here

100% of your donations goes to Bengal Rescue for Jenga's Surgery. Please use my Paypal account and make sure you put 'Jenga' in there. Or just email me privately at

Thank you so much for reading & helping out if you can. And even if you can't donate; thank you for keeping Jenga in your hearts!

This just in! Pictures of my little Catnip Quilts complete with cats! Thanks Sharla!

Saturday, October 31, 2009

One more cos it's Halloween

to hear the purring; sound must be loud

MY Sunbeams!

took me awhile to figure out they were playing with the sunmbeam on the floor. Sorry for the vert. format; can't figure out how to change it. If anyone knows; do post! Thanks!

Saturday Morning

NOW you can see why I'm not sewing. The action is non-stop and adorable. Makes me laugh. When I move to another room to do something they immediately stop and follow me. Our Tribe is TOO large! I don't want to take them to the shelter... If you know of anyone who might like a kitten; let me know. Thanks!

Monday, October 26, 2009


Latest 'LOLCat' from my friend Deb! Soooo cute!

We have taken in 3 adorable kittens who need forever homes. Unlike our Foster Jenga, these kittens are FREE! We had originally placed two of them but sadly those arrangements didn't work out. Now we are back to three; two boys & a girl. I have three cats & one foster all ready & can't keep any of them. If you would like one or know of anyone who might; I'm happy to make transportation arrangements to get them where they need to be.




This girl is simply beautiful!

Everybody wants to be a dog! NOT!

Friday, October 23, 2009

Mr. Aspen comes for a visit!

We were so excited to learn that Mr. Aspen could come for a two week visit! I had forgotten how much I loved having a talking cat!

Right now we have a full house! Mr. Aspen has his comfy carpeted garage; Jenga has my room; our three houligans Ms. Stella, Miss Jack & Scrappie have the sewing room, living room & kitchen; and the three tiny kittens have El's bathroom until they find permanent homes. They are quite adorable & I'll post some vid this weekend of them. I missed having tiny kittens but I'm over it now :) LOL! COME! Take one HOME! PLEASE!!!!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

How do you?

Say goodbye forever, to your best friend?
How do you say goodbye to that face? Those wobbly eyeballs? That TAIL?

She was a rescue kitten...

She was so beloved in our home she had her own colloquialisms, she became a verb.

She had many names. The one we gave her:'Coco'. After we got to know her she became all of; but not limited to the following: Cocoyouresocute; Lemur butt; Ghostcat & Transporter Kitty (owing to the fact that she could disappear in the house and after much thorough searching on our part, would reappear mystically, sleepy eyed as if to say 'What? I've been here the whole time.') We knew differently of course, there was a magic door somewhere in the house, & when it would get really hot; we figured she was somewhere on a black sandy beach in her white fur & gorgeous sea blue eyes suckin' down a daiquiri under a cute umbrella.

But I digress; *sigh*

Coco bonded instantly with Ellen. They could be seen anywhere in the house together at all times. Sick or well, asleep or awake; eating or not; together always. Coco became Ellen's favorite muse for the camera & trust me when I tell you, Coco wouldn't have had it any other way. In fact; if you started talking sweetly to any of our other cats; Coco would insinuate herself immediately on the scene because she knew; all such worshipping was meant only for her.

After we created a lovely backyard full of plants & flowers to attract birds, butterflies & such, we made the decision to convert our cats from outdoor to indoor. The only times they were allowed outdoors was with me; for an hour or so in the afternoons & early Sunday mornings in the backyard. They much loved this time. As Ellen's star model; she became our 'Thank You' card.

The night of September 5th, 2009 was a gorgeous full moon. Ellen took her camera we went outside to photograph it. Two of our cats joined us; one was Coco. Upon coming back into the house; I thought El had Coco, El thought I had Coco, she put her camera away; we chatted a bit, then went to bed.

After my Sunday morning walk, I returned home; Coco neither came out from the garage to meet me (& do her morning stretch/flop in front of me) so I figured she was in El's room. I checked there; nope. Strange.

I got my coffee; opened the back door and went out; sat with the other girls & wondered where the heck that ghost cat had transported to this time. After watering the back yard; brought everyone back in & then I went to the front yard to water. It was then that I noticed a small patch of white fur on a low coarse brick barrier near the garage. I picked it up; not thinking. El got up came to the front door; I told her Coco was missing, it was strange; El said 'Transporter kitty'. And we laughed.

I went to the side of the house to turn the water off. There is a long stretch down the side of the house where the tall cypress tress grow shading everything. Nothing grows on that side as a result and sometimes trash blows there from the winds. Something caught my eye. Even from a distance I could see trouble... small white tufts of fur. And it was then my heart started trembling. I walked back there in & picked up the few tufts. There was nothing else, no sign of struggle, no blood, nothing... Just the fur. With my heart hammering in my chest, I walked to Ellen's window and asked her if it looked like Coco's fur to her (I was hoping beyond all hope that it was some other cat's fur owing to a fight or something) Ellen opened her screen & took it from me; I heard her say "it looks like it" and by the time I had turned around, she had thrown it back out the window. Ellen's action took me so by surprise that for a moment I was intensely angry with her I audibly gasped. Then the realization came to me, another component of my grief not yet known...

The loss to Ellen was so large, that when perceived by her tender young heart it became something to be avoided at all costs; she immediately went into denial out of self preservation. When I understood that, it was more devastating to me than the tragedy of Coco's disappearance.

I would have to watch my beloved daughter, endure the heart rending anguish of losing her best friend.

This was all 6 days ago now. I'm not trying to be dramatic; but honest. Body shaking sobs. I have not wanted to eat; have not cleaned house, have not much conversed. And for the first couple days, didn't even talk about it with El, fearing she wasn't ready. I didn't want to push her. If she still had hope of Coco's return, I would have to let her come to the realization herself. I didn't go to work on the 8th, nor did Ellen go to school. I could tell that morning when I went to wake her that she had cried in the night; her face & eyes all puffy. I simply kissed her head; (she leaned into me) and I said; don't worry, go back to sleep then.

Leaving her room, I felt a tiny pressure release in my pain, not screaming teapot release, but rather a slow, drip, drip, drip release that I would later recognize as a small step toward healing of my own shattered heart. Knowing that on some level, Ellen was facing it. My brave, strong, amazing daughter, on her own, without me prompting, was facing a horrible life truth. *sigh*

What I haven't told you dear readers; (and bless you if you're still reading this) is that the fault of Coco's death is mine. Even back in the archives of this blog; I wrote a post about an early morning sighting IN MY OWN BACKYARD of a beautiful Coyote. And I did not heed it's warning. Even as we locked the cats in at night; in our daily routine; my vigilance slipped. Just enough to let that tiny 4 year old life slip through it. She was not in that night; I did not make sure. My daughters heartbreak falls at my feet. Along with my own heart there shattered in tiny pieces, hers mingles there too and the whispers of the pieces as they rustle together like dried autumn leaves say to me 'guilty'. And I am.

WE are the caretakers of our animals. WE must be ever watchful for them. Just as we are over our children. And I failed; and EPIC fail. It cost someone her life; and it cost someone else so very dear to me, her heart and I accept responsibility for that.

As for me; there is a time of day that I cannot yet go into the backyard. Each time I think of it I feel myself breaking apart. The time when I would come home from work, kick of my shoes; walk barefoot on the grass, and water things. She would be there; in the area I don't mow so it's long & tall grass that she could hide in, stalk my feet from, and ambush the other cats. I know I'll look for that tail, or that face in the grass, I won't find it anymore; and my heart will squeeze tight because I know, she's just gone.

Coco, we love you with all our hearts and all our feelers. We send big purrs to you and hope you can feel the vibrations of love.

And, I'm so very, very sorry to have lost you. Please forgive me beautiful girl.

Thursday, September 03, 2009


The French, in their infinite wisdom, created the humble crepe. A lovely, light, flat, airy pancake. I am not a 'foodie' I do not watch 'Top Chef' or 'Reality Chef' or any other programme about food or it's preparation. If I'm hungry; I eat what's available, and move on.

For a short time; I lived with my biological father & step-mom, when I moved out they gave me a vacuum & a crepe maker. Very wise! The crepe maker wasn't anything fancy; it was slightly dome shaped and you made your batter, put it in the 'lid' portion that stayed on the counter, dipped the pan into it for a second, then flipped the pan over, waited for the light to go on and peel off your crepe. Voila! as the French say, a perfectly round, flat, thin as paper; crepe. Yum! I prefer to eat my crepes plain (that is opposed to having them stuffed with anything). Well, that gift was given to a little over 20 years ago now. I still have it; still use it.

Tonight, it decided it adored my crepe batter so much it wasn't going to let them go. NOT. EVEN. ONE.

Ever notice how you can have something for so long, it's never given you a lick of trouble (where does that phrase come from?) & the minute said item starts 'acting up' you don't calmly tell yourself "Oh my, I guess it's just time for the poor thing to die. I'll have to get a new one, it lasted soooo long." NO! You stand there sweating, angry, frustrated & thinking, what a "hunk a junk!' I can't believe this P.O.S. is doing this to me! curse.curse.curse.

Ugh... this day was frustrating enough, now, in the overbearing heat; I used my last three eggs (this means if it goes badly, I can't even have French toast) to create a little comfort food and alas, the crepe gods are laughing! son-of-a... Well, being the true red head I am, I was not ready to give up nor toss in my whatever-they-call-that-white-French-cooking-hat-thingy, so I took a deep cleansing breath, and thought. I'd seen others use a regular pan for this sort of thing but they usually had some sort of flat 'spreader' utensil to evenly spread the batter. Who cares! I'm an artist, 'Ces't la Vie'! So I took out my beautiful stainless steel Cuisinart pan. It has a wide flat bottom. It's so bottom heavy it almost feels like cast iron! That pan was a gift from my step-dad & his wife a couple years ago for Christmas when they secret-Santa'd me & El with a check that left both of us stunned & teary!

Back to cooking: I dabbed a tiny bit of butter on it & spooned some batter in and I waited.

No bubbling up, must mean I have to flip it on my own... *sigh* I took a deep breath, slid my long cake spatula underneath, all the way around, then lifted slightly & flipped! The top batter wasn't quite done so there were many splatters, but the bottom was a nice golden brown. Figuring I was on the right track, I made several more. When all done; put butter on them & the last of the maple syrup (I mean really, I wasn't going to have French toast if this didn't work so it didn't matter). I closed my eyes & tasted...

They tasted the same. The rich buttery goodness, sweet spongy consistency and slight tang on the finish (owing to the dash of lemon zest you put in). They were thicker, more like three or four pieces of paper as opposed to one, they weren't perfectly round at all, though some were quite artistic in their rendition of themselves I welcomed them all, in all their 'carnations'.

This is how I enjoy my crepes: butter & light maple syrup. If you like crepes stuffed with every manner of sea roach known to roam the bottom of the ocean, that's your business. I like 'em the way my other step-mom used to make 'em. French pancakes indeed. Strangely, I feel comforted. Now off for a walk. Because as the French also know; if you play... you'd better pay and NO calorie goes unpunished!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Blog Move! :)

This blog will no longer be updated with quilt related items. I have moved all my art to this blog, please update your subscriptions accordingly and THANK YOU for subscribing!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Work in Progress

This piece is for a challenge with one of my local art groups. The theme is Archaeology.

Specs: 28" W x 38" H. Verticle Orientation
*This is actually a prototype for a quilt that will be nearly 50" x 50"*

Title: 'Among the Runes'

This piece explores symbols and letters used by civilizations from past to present. The backdrop is side of a rock face or petroglyph cave. On the top and bottom there are Runes; most ancient of all lettering. Next, a layer with the symbols of alchemy; there are seven representing base metals (gold; silver; mercury; lead; copper; iron; tin).

Ancient Japanese Kangi symbols representing 'Magic Spell': the Celtic treskle; Egyptian Eye of Horus; Native American symbol for wisdom and Fibonacci's spiral are scattered throughout.

In the very center; we've traveled through the past to 'uncover and view' the present. Upon closer inspection; the bright turquoise silk strips have binary code written upon them; representing the language of our modern world.

What was interesting was making the two quilts; the top layer and the 'inside layer' had to be put together in tandem to get the colors; placement, etc. to work together. Then the moment of truth came; cutting that top layer open! The 'inside layer' was then placed in back; it is only pinned at this point. The backing fabric is an aboriginal print with snakes (who frequent caves and dark forgotten worlds).

Silk charmuse; organza; discharged silks, hand dyed cotton; cotton sateen; damask tulle; decorative yarns; beading; hand calligraphy.

Thursday, August 06, 2009

Nourishment for Artist Souls

This is cool by Blisschick in truth; it's BEYOND cool! And it's FREE! I'm going to print it out & give it to my daughter & also put a copy in my sewing room ON THE DOOR! So I remember daily; it's about doing what you want; breaking self imposed boundaries and having fun! Let the muse in!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Long Beach Quilt Festival 2009 or "Rockin the Purple Carpet"


(my dog tags)

I would like to say THANK YOU to Karey & her fabulous band of fantastic femme's who worked so tirelessly to make the Long Beach Festival such a HUGE success! You gals ROCKED!

I nearly fainted with joy when I walked through the big open doors to see my own work staring me (literally) right back in the face! My Cheetah quilt was about as front & center as you could get. It was part of the 'West Coast Wonders II' exhibit and was flanked by one stunning piece of art after another! I was truly verklempt! So much for the mascara! After composing myself; my friend Julie snapped this pic. What a momentous occasion for this virtually unknown quilter from Orange, CA.

My Journal Quilt was there as well representing the water element: "Flamingo Walk"

My Edges Piece 'Silence'

My buddy Julie and her Edges piece:

That's all cut work, velvet. She did all that by hand!

Do you Moo too??? Here's some 'moos' I collected, can you 'guess who's moo' by the art?

I had one for Jamie Fingal but now can't find it :(

I will tell you that went I went over to Make it University & Judy Coates Perez was sitting there in her darling groovy yellow apron, I immediately went right over & said "There SHE IS!!!" Where is that lovely flip thing with your art on it??" She was gracious enough to actually act like she knew who the heck I was & what in the heck I was talking about! (Ok, I posted on her blog when she first showed it off, but really, I didn't expect her to actually remember)LOL. That's a classy gal right there!

As I kept walking I hear a voice shout out "You WIN!" and I stood there because A.) I was wearing my Tiara and B.) I'm nosey & want to see who won and what it is! This adorable little gal sitting there calls me over & gives me an ATC she's made. She says it's because of my Tiara. I'm so thrilled I don't even realize who I'm talking to! It's MELANIE TESTA!!!! I'm standing there like a big doof and MELANIE TESTA is giving me one of her ATC's!!! Just when I thought I couldn't be anymore verklemt than I was all ready between the Cheetah, Ms. Perez & being filmed by Bonnie McCaffrey (ok, more on that later!) Here it is; I will treasure it always!!! Thank YOU!!! so much Melanie!

I pinned it on my dress & wore it proudly the rest of the day!!!

Speaking of running into folks! A gal I've been friends with online for awhile now was going to be at Festival & we exchanged cell numbers so we could 'meet in person'. I was so thrilled to see her & we hung out for a good while chatting & laughing & even walking the vendor isles a bit. SO much FUN!!! I was sad when I had to leave her but it was such a great highlight of my day!!! Here we are, me & my buddie Lynn Douglass

We're standing in front of my Detours piece "Noah's Raven".

Here's a shot of me & Cynthia Catlin; she's in charge of exhibitions for Quilts on the Wall: Fiber Artists. Many of you may not know, I'm currently President of this group (2 years) and Cynthia is the past president & now Exhibitions Chair. There are over seventy members in this group. She works incredibly hard on our exhibits for Quilts on the Wall! Thank you to Susan Willen for taking this picture of us!

Here's some shots of my 'Combat Tiara for the Dangerously Fabulous!" Though there was no official 'parade of Tiara's' this year, I made one anyway just in case.

What I shared at the QA/SAQA reception: Still a WIP but getting closer Sarah!

What we bought! Julie & Cindy & I had a blast at the 'Hand Dyed' shop as usual!

That brilliant Red is one piece that has browns on either side & that gorgeous red strip right down the middle. It's amazing!

These yummy pieces were from Anansi village.

Now about Bonnie!

When we first got to Festival; Julie & I were standing at the Detours exhibit. I noticed a gal standing in front of my 'Noah's Raven' with a video recorder. She asked me if I'd like to be on film & say a few words. Being up for anything and feelin so groovy from my Cheetah high I was all excited to do it... Till I realized, I had to stand there and SAY SOMETHING on CAMERA! She asked me to say some words about the raven & my tiara, I kid you not, I stood there said 'what?'. I was so nervous I couldn't figure out what to do considering I couldn't really look at either thing while I was trying to describe it! I thought about ripping the Tiara off my head but the fear of having all my hair standing upright and askew on camera would be worse. If there was any useful footage of my fumblings I'll be amazed! I felt so dumb & my voice had tremours from being nervous! I mean, here's me who could get up & sing in front of crowds (and has) but without a script? or something to focus on? I was totally lost!

It was fun and when it's all over, she thanked me and was so nice & she left with Julie to talk about Julies piece in Edges. Then someone came up to me and asked 'So, did Bonnie McCaffrey interview you?' did I realize! OMG!!! THAT was BONNIE MCCAFFREY!!! SHUT UP!!! Well, it was a total geek out moment I can assure you! No idea, as I said, if any of the footage will wind up on the vidcasts of the show but ya; I'll be watchin! And later the next day; I looked up her site & watched nearly all her vidcasts & was blown away by not only the artists she's interviewed, but all the lovely quilts she's captured! Thank you Bonnie for showing those of us who can't go to Houston, or England those fantastic quilts!!!

So, that's my story... (not all of it; but there are somethings that have to stay under wraps just yet)

Still floatin' on cloud 10!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Paw It Forward Presents !

Ms. Stella O'Houligan says "I got presents?" Loco Coco say's "Heeeyyyy, datz for all of us!" (Loco she's not!) Stellie say's "I'M the LEADER, I'LL inspect this to make sure it's safe for you blondie!"

"HEY GUYS!! We have GRASS!!! Get the biped over here to make it!"

"Hummm; catnip ball should go to our newest 'tenant'; she could sure use extra love being parted from her family after 6 years"

Jenga says "Why Thank you Ms. O'Houligan, how positively civil of you!"

Jenga says, "And don't worry about the extra loves, the biped's got that covered!"

All this love & cuddlez from our friends at Furrydance. The card was even personalized with a secret braille message from them. Our hooman squealed at that... little does she know... The alliance is strong. Our hooman said she's making something extra special for the Furrycat dancers and Disco NoFurNo too! She can't disclose here but we've all tested them; & now we will get some too! Rock On~'Nip out!