Friday, September 23, 2011



"Giver of Light" light switch cover


Thank you Kimberly

Strange title for a blog post huh? There is method to my madness. I’ve been hungry lately. I mean really hungry. It might be attributed to the change in weather we have had in Virginia this week, but whatever it is, I have been cooking constantly all week. The brisk air has also given me an added boost and I’ve been in the studio round the clock (when not in the kitchen) So, this week, I’m presenting my recipe for Mussels. I know not everyone likes mussels but it seems that those who do, really love them. I also am presenting my “Giver of Light” light switch cover. They have been very popular but I don’t seem to get around to making them very often for some reason. This one is much more contemporary looking than the others I have created but I like the change.


Living in a farm community in the Loire Valley in France, as I did years ago, presented a few small problems. Almost every night as I dined at quaint restaurants, the owners would have the windows wide open. The aroma from the manure fertilizers that the French farmers used competed with the bouquet of the fabulous French food.

Mussels were served on a regular basis at most of these restaurants. One restaurant in particular served the absolute best mussels I have ever eaten. It took me many tries to be able to duplicate the special sauce they served with the mussels. When I lived at home, my father always referred to these stocks or sauces as “commonstock” I don’t know where that name originated but I still use it. The commonstock in this case is made from basil, wine and heavy cream. Still, there is one missing ingredient. No matter how hard I try, I cannot replicate the fertilizer aroma!

These are sooooo good!

Here is my rendition of that wonderful dish.

Serves 12 as a first course, 6 as a main course.

6 lbs. mussels. Mussels must be closed when you buy them. Wash them and throw away any that are not closed or do not close with a tap on opening. After cooking, throw any away that have not opened.

3 medium onions
6-10 garlic cloves. I use whole bulb.
2 sticks of unsalted butter or a bit more if needed plus a little olive oil
2 cup of white wine. I have heard that Alsatian Gewurztraminer wine is the best to use. I have tried a lot of different wines. Acidic wine from the Loire Valley is very good as well.
1 ½ cups of heavy cream
3 cups fresh basil
Salt and pepper
a small handful of capers.
3 bottles clam juice-8 oz each

l. Cook onion and garlic in butter and oil over low heat till softened. About 3-5 minutes. Add mussels.

2. Add wine and clam juice and cook covered over high heat till mussels open wide. About 6-8 minutes

3. Transfer the mussels to large pasta bowls and put commonstock into food processor or blender along with the cream, basil and pepper mixture. Blend till smooth. Add capers and season Pour over the mussels. Definitely have a good crusty bread for dunking or serve over pasta, preferably homemade.

Another view of "Giver of Light"

“Giver of Light” switch cover is $55. Please e-mail me if you’d like to purchase.

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Monday, September 12, 2011



Crackled wax effect on number 2 Frida

Here I go again with my Frida obsessions. I spent so much time on the face for the painting I worked on a few months ago, that I am trying to utilize that time by using the digitals for various artwork that I normally create. This time around, I’ve chosen the “Gypsy Woman” series. Frida may not have been a gypsy but she had the heart and soul of one. She loved to dress in the native Mexican garb and wore flowers and jewelry that depicted her country.

All three Frida journals

I ran a digital image of Frida. I used all sorts of yarn and ribbons to embellish the spine and I placed some of the flowers I dried from my garden onto the front with encaustic wax, which I then painted.

Frida journal number 1

Close-up of wax finish

Inside back journal number 1

For the second journal, I did much the same with a few variations like crackling the face. The third one is an image from my “Music is my refuge” collage. I think she also looks Frida-ish.

Crackled wax effect on journal number 2

"Music is my Refuge" journal

Hope you like them. They are for sale. If I don’t sell them here at my blog, I plan to take them to the Farmer’s Market where I sell each Saturday. Hopefully these journals will appeal to someone who likes the textural feel of the cloth and wax.

Journal number 1 is 5x7” and priced at $46. Number 2 is also $46 and number 3 is $42. Please e-mail me if you are interested and we can go from there. I take all major credit cards, checks or Paypal.

Thanks so much! Hugs XX00

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Friday, September 2, 2011



My sparkly b-dazzled web-toed shoes

I am the secret salesman for Vibram shoes. By that I mean, they haven’t hired me or paid me a single penny for my labors and yet I go out and about, here and there promoting their webbed toed shoes.

This madness all started when I pulled a tendon in my knee during the summer and had a hard time walking in my regular sandals. My friend, Trish, had been having problems with her back and recommended the web shoes to me. After trying them on, I was hooked. My walking improved and I’m thrilled to say, by adding a few little gems to the toes, they match my B-Dazle car!

My feet now match my car!!!

We are having our Labor Day, birthday party combo on Monday and I have purchased a pair for my son-in-law. As a little joke, I’m attaching the sparkles to each of the toes on his shoes before I gift wrap them. Of course the sparkles are the kind that just peel off. Won’t he be surprised when he opens his gift to see these very feminine sparkled web toes! Just think, he will have shoes to match his mother-in-laws!

Ya gotta have some fun these days

Also, I wanted to give everyone the heads up that I have just added my new class schedule to my right hand side bar. I’m thrilled to say that I only need one more student for the Sculpting the Figure in Clay class since all of the previous class members have registered for the new class! You can check out both of these classes by clicking here

Sculpting the Figure in Clay
Click here for details.

Faces, faces, faces
Click here for details

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