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• after a week in new mexico i am feeling inspired by the food and landscape there. i just happened to have this beautiful cookbook checked out from the library already, coincidentally it had a vegetarian pozole recipe in it. yay! it’s not quite as good as the pozole at the alley cantina in taos, but it was pretty darn close. if you don’t have a mexican grocery nearby you can order hominy online.

• one of my favorite things i brought back with me from new mexico is this healing salve that smells so good and felt soothing on my nm sunburn. once i run out i am going to try to make my own with local sap.

• i made a new mexico playlist.


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• it’s been days since i have posted here. i apologize. i have been completely swept up by the goldfinch. i feel like an addict, unable to think of anything other than getting my fix. i am fifteen hours into the book, with fifteen hours to go… i could pull an allnighter? i cannot wait to see the movie. i love the trailer and love that they used a perfume genius song for it. this book makes me want to write a book, to travel, to befriend an older person, to live wildly (for a day or two here and there without the drugs/heavy drinking) and to paint a goldfinch. i read donna tartt’s the secret history and thought it was okay, but nowhere near as engaging as the goldfinch. if you are looking for a great summer read i highly recommend it.

• other than being book obsessed i have been working on my upcoming newsletter (coming out in the next few days), glazing pots, and making jewelry to sell.

• loved this bittersweet short film about life/cats.


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• made this cake over the weekend. the perfect thing to celebrate a great weekend. i also made a version of these, i will be adding these to my make more often collection.

• i know that there are a lot of podcasts out there and more being made by the day, but i found this list and am feeling podcast overwhelm. i am just going to have to let it go that i will never get through them all. just the visual art alone is a heck of a lot of podcasts. i am really enjoying this one… hoping it will somehow help me figure out how to be more financially stable through my art. me + finances = lost cause.

• spent an afternoon at the VMFA this weekend. always inspiring. this was my favorite piece this time around.


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• i am almost finished listening to animal farm on libby. very thought provoking. you can listen (and watch) to it here.

• made these yummy little things last week. simple, yet so good. i baked them in the oven instead of pan frying.

relax - i.e. - focus on your exhale - i.e. - stimulate your vagus nerve. after two years of feeling off kilter i can honestly say that conscious breathing and meditation are so helpful when it comes to trying to calm the mind, which can help to keep you feeling grounded when you feel out of whack. i have a tendency to hold my breath when i get anxious, it took me so long to figure out i was even doing this, but now that i am aware of it i try to focus on my breath when i start to feel the anxiety creeping in. looking forward to reading this book soon.


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• i have no idea why, but i’ve been thinking about camels. yep, camels. which of course led me to want a baby camel or maybe just a print of one, and then from there looking up why a camel was used to advertise cigarettes and soap, then from there admiring the work of larry rivers and thinking about how i can incorporate camels in my work. still working those thoughts out.

• i am so happy to find out that the writer’s almanac is still available. i missed the daily dose of poetry.

• i appreciate the work of christine sun kim. loved this nytimes article. watching her ted talk makes me want to learn sign language.


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• on my walk this morning i was thinking about trees and how they communicate with each other. even though i want to know everything about everything, i love that there’s so much about life and this world that we will never truly understand, no matter how hard we try.

• i have a great admiration for things that are beautifully handmade and hope that somehow, one day the world will steer itself back towards a greater appreciation of handmade items. if there was one thing i could learn how to make it would be a violin. there’s a local luthier in charlottesville that makes such beautiful violins. to be able to make something so beautiful that is also functional and brings joy to those that play it and hear it being played must feel pretty amazing. there’s also a local metalsmith that makes these skillets that one day i hope to own (when i make it big = win the lottery).

• i am feeling pretty excited to be switching over to watercolors (as least for now). here’s my most recent watercolor painting. i will be announcing my upcoming watercolor workshop soon.


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• our magnolia trees are blooming. that alone makes me happy.

• i was so excited to have found this book at our recycling center. i listed to medium raw on libby last year and loved it, but have really wanted to read kitchen confidential. i have slowly been working my way through all the parts unknown videos, with only a few left. even as a vegetarian (although some of the shots are a bit queasy) i love the show so much. i just discovered there’s a great musical companion to the show here.

• wishing i still had my bead loom from when i was in high school, although I could just make one, so i could make a bracelet like this. my old boyfriend used to love the grateful dead so i made him a bracelet with this on it. it was pretty cool and took me forever. he later broke my heart, but that’s okay. i am so over him now.


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• the voice of aldous harding, like a thick, not too sweet, amber honey. absolutely loving her new album.

• returning to this book today. it’s one i usually like to take with me anytime i fly somewhere, it has a grounding effect on me when i read it.

• the transient smell of honeysuckle that delicately permeates the air this time of year is truly a gift each time i smell it. if you haven’t ever smelled honeysuckle i so wish you could.


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• my son is on day 3 of being sick, the oil is out and it’s been in the lower 50’s this week (thankfully we can burn wood to take the chill out of the house), i am about a month behind in getting my next online workshop off the ground, and my laptop died last night (i am using my prehistoric computer that is extremely slow) i am not complaining, just keeping it real. after just finishing the sound of gravel i know how abundant my life is, we have warm running water and plenty of food in our fridge. however, my inspiration level is low today. i need an inspiration level meter on here. ;)

• this afternoon, in between chopping broccoli (making dinner early, since it’s karate night), making lunches for my children, and listing a couple of new paintings on Etsy, honestly, knife in hand, phone next to the cutting board as i multitask, i thought again about how challenging it is as a mother/artist to balance everything, even though my children are almost adults. it’s been a balancing act for the past 17 years, but the rewards of watching them grow into themselves are worth every single moment with them. pretty soon they will both be off and then?! i am thinking about teaching more or maybe going back to school, maybe both.

• when my inspiration levels are low i know i just need to keep busy, and make my morning walk a little longer as well as my afternoon meditation. i love the zen saying “if you can, meditate for an hour each day if you don’t have time for an hour mediate for two.” yesterday and today i kept busy by downsizing my collage stash by making packs that i have for sale here.


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my obsession continues - so far i think it’s under control, but if I get these pant i might have gone too far.

• the dough for these beautiful rolls is rising in the kitchen. i hope they are as good as they look. I am going to make a version of this farro salad to go with them. perfect for this cold rainy spring day.

a good reminder.


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• after reading this article i was inspired to dig a little deeper and found this book, i started it on libby this morning.

• after reading about saffron in the secret lives of color i keep thinking about it. it’s the most expensive spice in the world and takes up to 45,000 flowers to create one pound of this delicate spice. how wild. i am not sure if i have actually ever had it and am tempted to splurge on this beautiful tin of it and make this delicious looking dish.

• last week i bought a couple bamboo shoots at our local asian market, with no plans or knowledge on what i was going to make with them, they just looked intriguing, so i grabbed two. after reading about needing to boil them for 30 minutes or more to remove the cyanogenic glycosides i decided i didn’t really want to serve them to my family after all, but i cut them open and decided to dry them out for later. yesterday morning i noticed a bunch of little bamboo shoots on my walk, i grabbed a couple of the longer pieces to make art tools with. who knows, maybe it will lead me somewhere?!


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• this morning, i finished the tea girl of hummingbird lane. i usually don’t like fiction unless there’s some truth to it. this book was filled with truths about the history, beliefs, and ways of the akah hill tribe. i love when a book opens doors of curiosity, as this one did. this morning, my mind is filled with questions, ideas, and dreams of traveling to such a place/time to see and understand the lives of such a tribe.

• again, i am craving time at a museum. i hope to get to the freer soon, i really want to see this painting in person.

• one question that i wish i knew the answer to is what makes a person interested in certain things/cultures? for a very long time i have been intrigued by asian cultures. from listening to this album a million times when i was in my early twenties, making pottery inspired by japanese potters, and attempting to make samosas, dim sum, and other random asian foods. one day i really hope to make the journey to one of these lands to see it all in real life instead of through songs, foods, photos, and videos.


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• i don’t have any tattoos, but love looking at vintage style tattoos for reference images. although, if i ever did get one I would go for a colorless tattoo like this.

• the most recent photos from massimo colonna make me feel like there’s another world out there, one i think i want to visit.

• loving these portraits of humanity


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these little scissors! so cute!

• saving for this ring. ha ha! jk, it’s sold out. it’s so beautiful. that green!!!

• last year i went through a pu-erh tea phase. i kept trying to love it, but honestly, it’s too musty tasting for me. i prefer a more vegetal green tea. i love the history of pu-erh tea and have my own small collection that i treasure. (luckily it only gets better with age) last year, during this short phase i really wanted to read this book, but it wasn’t available on libby until today, i am so looking forward to listening to is. maybe it will inspire me to brew up a cup of pu-erh tea.


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• the music of janice wong, so incredibly beautiful. i first found her on insight timer, but was so happy to find her on spotify, too.

• my go to banana bread recipe - vegan + gluten free (i use almond flour instead of wheat flour) and i skip the nutmeg and white sugar (1/2 a cup of brown sugar is more than enough). i made it yesterday and it’s almost gone. it is so good.

• i really, really, really want to make these cookies.


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nowness videos, especially the my place series.

(un)fashion - love this quirky book and all the beautifully unique people in it, it’s great for reference.

• taking online tests to tell me what i already know. what’s enneagram your type? i am type four with a 3wing.


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• i got sucked into the world of flickr this morning, looking for certain images. there’s some weird stuff out there! some of it is great material for collage/reference. getting lost on there is like going for a long walk and ending up in an abandoned house from the 50’s where the tv is still playing and on the kitchen table is a recipe for jello salad.

these canaries. I must paint them.

• as soon as i get a little better on violin i want to learn this song.


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the lonely palette is at the top of my favorites art podcasts list. listening to them always makes me want to spend the day wandering around an art museum.

Q: how do you get to carnegie hall? A: practice. practice. practice. last week, between relearning the violin and taking karate classes i was feeling rather incompetent. the easiest thing to do would be to quit, it would also be the worst thing to do, at least for the health of my brain. more and more studies are proving how important it is for our brains to continue to learn new things, no matter how challenging they are. with practice, our brains begin to change and learning speed increases. learning something new also helps keep you in the moment, which keeps your mind from wandering to any negative places, therefore it makes it easier to be happier. while i don’t plan on playing the violin at carnegie hall or entering any karate competitions learning both are bringing a lot of joy to my life.

• another thing bringing joy to my life? this color of gouache. i oooh and ahhh every time i squeeze it from the tube onto my palette.


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• thinking about the work of cy twombly, especially his photographs. especially this lovely photo. our peonies are soon to bloom. i cannot wait to photography them when they do.

• i really enjoyed listening to this documentary on creativity. i wish it was a series.

reading and thinking about plastics a lot lately. it’s beyond frustrating. this weekend i ran into a friend of ours at the grocery store, as we were catching up she said “i am trying to get off plastics”, it really resonated with me, then i looked in my cart at the bakery bread wrapped in plastic and then paper, and the plastic bag of raw almonds. it’s pretty much impossible to avoid, from groceries, to electronics, to cars, to clothing, it’s in everything. i haven’t used a single plastic bag to pack my children’s lunches in four years, but i know that’s not enough. i know i need to start being more aware of what i am purchasing and figure out better alternatives. plastic is an amazing invention that has saved lives and changed the world, but unfortunately it’s also destroying our beautiful planet. listening to this podcast now.


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• i’ve had this book on my shelf for awhile now and decided to listen to it while painting seagulls. a great read/listen at any age.

• i love our csa, what could be better than having fruits and veggies brought right to your door? this week we got lots of green beans, which i will be using tonight to make this soup from my favorite moosewood cookbook. when i was a teenage i wanted to make my own version of the moosewood cookbook. i really loved mollie katzen’s drawings and handwritten recipes.

{check here to find your own csa}

• my latest addiction? move over cake pops, hello mango pops!


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• i wish i could remember the first bob dylan song that i heard that made me fall so deeply in love with his music. so in love that at seventeen i joined the bmg cd club, at least twice, to collect all of his cds. i am grateful to add this beautiful little book to my dylan collection. you can listen to it here. it brings me back to this video that brings me to tears every single time. the first time i saw patti in concert was when she opened for bob dylan. she was barefoot and flailing around the stage. oh, how i’d love to go back to that day.

this song was the perfect companion on my morning walk in the rain.

• after listening to a whole podcast about carrot cake i had to make one. thankfully, it’s almost gone, i can’t go in the kitchen without it calling to me.


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• the voice + meditations of sarah blondin. her voice reminds me of brit marling’s from the OA - sometimes when i listen to these meditations i feel like i might transcend into another dimension.

this painting. so tender.

this has to be one of the best videos for a good laugh and this has to be one of the best for a good cry.


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• the visceral videos of mark borthwick take me back to a time in my life when i was so much younger, filled with a billion unanswerable questions about the world and what it all means.

• loving raw milk podcasts. listening to this one while admiring the work of stella maria baer.

•  i had my third karate class last night. feeling very challenged, but loving it even with the frustrations of being a beginner. next class i get to wear my gi and maybe even get my white belt. part of me likes being a beginner, at least i have an excuse as to why i can’t seem to figure out my left arm from my right. and thank god we aren’t using swords or i would have cut off both my arms by now. where’s mr. miyagi when you need him?


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• the beautiful watercolor paintings from satsuki shibuya.

this quote kinda sums me up. i don’t try to contradict myself on purpose, it just seems to come naturally. if i tell myself to do something a certain way 95% of the time I do it the opposite way. i am slowly driving myself mad. hopefully i won’t start making avant-garde art out of urinals.

• the amazing work of tahiti pehrson. i cannot even fathom the amount of patience it would take to create such work.


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• i spent saturday morning foraging for wild dandelion greens for the perfect spring salad. it’s the best time of year for this, when the greens aren’t bitter and pretty much everywhere. if you go picking just make sure you pick in an area that isn’t sprayed with pesticides. if you are really ambitious you can pick + roast the roots for a nice coffee substitute. i have tried this, it’s fun to know how/what to do, but takes a lot of roots. there’s always dandy blend, which i love when i want a “coffee” drink.

• speaking of roots, how about some cake? two of my favorite foods in one - chocolate + beets = cake! crazy right? not at all. this cake is a showstopper. plus it’s gluten and dairy free! it does not taste like beets, it has a similar flavor of a really good mexican drinking chocolate . rich cinnamon and fine dark chocolate are gifts from god.

• looking for some cool new shirts for summer? uniqlo is my favorite place for affordable, good quality shirts for the whole fam.


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• kinda obsessed with this book. right now it’s this color. i am so tempted to get this tube of it from michael harding. i have a couple tubes of this brand (this red is amazing) and love them. they are so expensive + so luxurious, at least as far as oils go.

• i recently discovered the work of holly warburton - talk about color! whoa. like so many things, i feel myself oscillating between wanting to paint with a lot of vibrant colors, and wanting a very limited, more neutral color palette. luckily, i am my own boss -holding the double edge sword. :P

• dinner tonight? i thought you’d never ask • it’s going to be an asparagus - mushroom stuffed focaccia bread and a spring mix salad with lemon juice and sunflower seeds.


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this (and all) stationary • when i was a teenager i had over a dozen penpals from all over the world. i so loved to write and receive letters. beautiful stationary is still one of the few things i love to collect.

• the work of kevin waldron • really makes me want to write + illustrate a children’s book, something i have wanted to do since my children were little babes. each week we’d go to the library and get a stack of 30 children’s books to read for the week. i was on a secret mission to read every children’s book in the erie public library.

• i’m going through a carrot phase right now. can’t seem to get enough. i made a version of this soup • so simple • so good • i roasted the carrots at 450º first, to bring out their sweetness. it was a hit.


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• seeing the work of mariana murabito makes me want to try weaving again.

• this guys instagram makes me want to take a long, leisurely road trip just to take photos.

• i made a version of these burgers last night - great for dinner and even better for breakfast. instead of bread crumbs i used ground-up crackers, instead of parmesan i used feta.


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• another birthday treat that i am savoring. . . yuzu marmalade - perfect by the spoon or to stir into a cup of tea.

• i have become a Golden QoR Artist Educator. i have a feeling there will be a lot more watercolor paintings, like the one here, in my future.

• after listening to this podcast i was intrigued and decided to get the secret lives of color by kassia st. clair. it arrived yesterday and i am already fifty pages in and really enjoying learning more about color.


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• it’s 10am and i am already planning dinner. fresh bread + this salad - i’ve actually never had watercress before. i hope our local little grocery store has it, since i plan on making it for dinner. i am so going to load it up with bubbies!

• Maira Kalman, i love her and her work and her love of dogs. this video never gets old.

• my herb garden has been calling me. mostly to weed, but also to get some new seeds in the soil. this year it will be calendula + russian tarragon along with the catmint, catnip, parsley, yarrow, oregano, and whatever else happens to return from last year.


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• the work of Akira Satake. seeing it in person made me love it even more. meet my new little Yunomi!

• what’s in my teacup? spring. at least that’s what the 2019 “first flush” green tea tastes like. so good.

• watching this movie made me realize just how little i actually knew about john lennon. it inspired this playlist.


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• if you find yourself sick in bed for days, instead of woe-is-me-ing over the tiny window view of spring move in without you, i highly recommend binging on salt, fat, acid, heat. of course, salt was my favorite. i ordered moshio and maldon sea salt this morning.

• once you feel alive again you might want to treat yourself to a new sketchbook, as i may have done. this is one of my favorite sketchbooks. i love the soft cover and the thick, but not too thick pages.

• to nourish yourself, after a week of, say just oranges and bread, try this simple, but satisfying soup.


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• this tiny desk concert - i need to start a garden!

• i really love the work of wilfrid wood

• i cannot stop eating these chips - at least they are sorta healthy, depending on how many you eat!


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• learning 1-10 in japanese and other random words for the karate class my son and i started this week.

• oh, how i would love to add these shoes to my growing high-top collection - too expensive for me, but i do love them.

• working on rewiring my brain - through meditation, music, and visualization.


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• the rose bud tea from ching ching cha - very simple, but so good. organic rose buds + honey + hot water.

• the georgian bread at compass rose - this bread did not disappoint!

• the smell and feel of this face mask - i almost feel younger.


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a new playlist -43- hbd to me

• absolutely loving the forms created by this potter

• thinking about painting this beautiful moth


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• the return of spring peepers - such a beautiful sound.

vegan chocolate - so, so good!

• the art of maggie casey - makes me wonder how some people’s brains think so differently than others.


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• my favorite incense, especially this time of year.

• my daily handstand practice - up to 8 seconds without the wall and 30 with. wahoo.

• these words from Mary Oliver - yes to a little mischief, some singing,and loads of kindness!


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this article -has me dreaming about food as an art form.

this pathway has me swooning like never before.

• i am so in love with this color of paint. so dainty, so beautiful.


• the songs of helado negro - tiny desk

• learning the violin all over again - this time with the help of youtube/apps - starting with the suzuki book one.

this painting


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this video - debussy for an elephant

• this instagram post from a local yoga teacher

• starting a new book on libby


 
 

my goal here is to share daily findings; inspiration, podcasts, photos, books, music, and other random things that bring me happiness somehow or other, three things at a time.

please email me if you are interested in a print of any of the photos posted here.


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