Saturday, November 22, 2008

Another travel week

Spent three days on the road this week with Barry again. He's been a good travel mate. We're both Scorpios (birthdays one day apart) and have a lot in common. We had some real adventures on this trip including involvement in a medical emergency in a market where the clerk was having a serious diabetic issue. We thought she was drugged, but luckily some people came in who knew her and fed her orange juice, which revived her fairly quickly. Our best meal on this trip was in a school cafeteria where they were serving Thanksgiving dinner...quite yummy.

At one client, we'd been invited to stay in the elegant Hospitality House. The home had been built in Atlanta in 1929, and the family only lived in it a month before being forced to sell because of the depression. The home was empty for a few years, then sold to a restaraunteur whose family enjoyed it for 43 years. Some time ago it was moved to the college campus where it is now. It was fun to stay in the posh environment...old time luxury. I'm attaching a view of the living room from the front vestibule. Beyond that room were the sunroom and a sitting room.

Another image is of the sunset view from my room the following night near the Smoky Mountains. Cold night, but the next day was much warmer.

The stained glass Tiffany-ish lamp is one I bought many years ago. I'm posting it just because a friend wanted to see it. I plan to strip the wallpaper in that room and pull the carpet from what is supposed to be hardwood floors beneath it, but that job is going to have to wait until at least Spring.

A friend at work loaned me a thick book to read today, but I don't know when I'll find time. It is all the rage with young women these days, and the movie was released today. Three young women at work and a coed I met on a college campus this week have assured me I will love it. TWILIGHT doesn't sound like something I'd like, and I do have that copy of A SEPARATE PEACE I just bought for my niece that I'd like to read again. Another niece is expecting to pick up her wedding album next week - into which I still have to do some calligraphy. I'm hosting Thanksgiving at my house too, so this weekend may not allow me to read...I will post a review of the book when I do read it.

I bought some canvases a week ago at Preston's Art Store. I still haven't touched them with paint. I have lots of ideas, but little time.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Business cards

When I visited the downtown Christmas Open House last week I delivered a new business card to one of the shops whose owner had requested them. In another I picked up a great graphic card of another artist. Love it! The two cards are pictured here.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Late to my own birthday party

My family had a surprise birthday party for me last Sunday - the day before my birthday. I was two hours late. It WAS a surprise, after all, and that proved it! I got some sweet gifts, and even sweeter cards. Two had sentiments that almost made me cry, and many were very funny. I also received many cards from calligraphy friends with whom I'm in a birthday card exchange. Talented people! All the cards were handmade and each very different from the other. I will post photos later.

Last Saturday I went to a Tea Party/Christmas sale with my very excellent friend Doris. I bought a couple of pieces of blue glass for my collection, but mostly just enjoyed spending time with her. She'd taken me to lunch at Panera Bread for my birthday and we'd shopped for a bit at Hobby Lobby. Doing things I like to do with a very good friend...good times.

On Monday two work friends took me to lunch. It was a very good break in what was to be a hard hard that I left early today to keep my sanity. I also got flowers at work...a pretty little fall arrangement that I meant to bring home today. I hope they're still alive on Monday. Another friend and I went to lunch on Tuesday for his birthday. I found a new lunch spot that is very good!

My 16 year old niece had knee surgery Wednesday due to a sports injury. I will visit her this weekend. A good friend's mother died yesterday, so that is on my mind too. My elderly aunt left for FL and I am worried about her safety there on her own this winter. She was argumentative when we spoke Sunday night. My husband was right when he called me 'stubborn'. It runs deep in my family. Aunt Chris is the worst! I guess that's how she's lived so long and so well.

Last night I met Doris again, in downtown Jeff, for an arty Christmas shopping downtown open house. All the little stores were decorated and festive and all also provided refreshments. I bought hot pepper raspberry preserves and gleaned the recipe for one artist's curry cream cheese. It will be a great party hors-doeuvres. I also bought some cool cards that will be fun to send. I left after visiting only a few shops...just too tired from a long, rough day to stay out any later.

Tomorrow I will go to yet another Open House. This one at the art store where I used to teach calligraphy, collage and card design. They are having a special discount tomorrow so I plan to buy some new canvases. I'm not doing art shows any more, but I still have the urge to create and want to paint some new art for my home. Once again, it will be fun to spend the afternoon with Diana. We always laugh a lot and I need her brand of levity in my life.
The image with this post is of a small abstracted cityscape I did last fall. There is a bit of texture in it that doesn't show up, and the camera flash has put a little glare on it. The wall is pale yellow, but looks more beige here, so the painting is slightly yellower too, I think. I painted two of these (similar, not exact) - one to sell and one to keep. The other did sell, and I'm glad I kept this one.

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Goodbye, Savannah

I visited Savannah last week - sadly, probably for the last time. Co-worker Barry takes over my Georgia accounts and I introduced him to the client near there. We did have time to see some of the sights and eat a couple of nice meals. My birthday is Monday and his is Tuesday, so maybe that's why we made compatible travel partners.
One picture above is the exterior of The Lady and Sons restaurant...a de riguer stop for many who visit Savannah. We did manage to book dinner there and weren't disappointed. The cornucopia salad is a meal on its own. Another photo is of a small part of the third seating for lunch at Mrs. Wilkes' Boardinghouse. It's open for lunch only and cash only. Seating and service is family style...ten people, many strangers, around a table covered with at least 18 different dishes of the most exquisite Southern cooking since Grandma's. At our table were a couple from Rhode Island and a family from California. We all agreed it was worth the wait. We had to take our plates to the kitchen sink on the way out - but we didn't have to wash them. Even so, I liked it better than Paula Deen's restaurant, but at Paula's our waitress, Taylor, and other guests sang Happy Birthday to Barry and me. (Barry was enamored of another waitress who reminded him of a glasses-less and younger Sarah Palin. She was also much younger and very cute.) We were told that lunch at Mrs. Wilkes' is listed as one of the 1001 things to do before you die. Well, we've done it; I hope I get to do it again. Yum, yum!
We met the Turners one night, a Welsh couple who had spent several years in Louisville. They now live in Savannah. Barry collects toasts, and they gave us "Iechyd Da" - pronounced Yahky Dah. It means 'good health'. We also 'met' an angry audio crossing guard. It said "Wait!" over and over again in a very rude voice. The same night we met the beauteous Mary Kate, a sweet young barrista at Kevin's Pub. Barry was in love. Unfortunately my photos in the pub were dark and blurry.
Another photo is a glimpse inside a gated courtyard, and another a magnificent fountain. I was asked to take a photo of a young couple by the fountain. I think it turned out great...they were a beautiful couple, and the fountain is magnificent. It's so nice to have such wonderful public art. I could have shot photos all day long. There was no lack of memorable sights.
There's a photo from near Vidalia, Georgia of Barry picking cotton...something he's always had an urge to do. Yes, he knows it's not fun to really pick cotton from the bolls, but picking a couple of sprigs was. I've also posted some photos of typical homes in the Historic district. We walked for miles before we had to go catch our plane for home. Savannah is a marvelous walking city. Many wonderful shops, and always a visual (not to mention gastronomic) feast.

Saturday, November 01, 2008

I love flowers!

Bought these at the grocery tonight. There wasn't enough in the bunch to fill out the vase, so I went to my backyard for filler. Don't the yellow-speckled leaves add just the right touch!

Bits and Pieces

On my way home from work last night I remembered that it was the last day of the Five from Four exhibit. As luck would have it, the Second Street bridge was backed up so it was a second reason to detour and go to the Cressman Center to see Steve and Laurie's exhibit one more time. I arrived just before the gallery closed and was fortunate to have the gallery to myself for contemplative study of each piece. Loved the textures Laurie Doctor incorporated into her large canvases. Textural painting is one of my favorite means of expression, and she does it so well. She also used "Moon Lettering" - which I'm not sure if it is her own creation or if it's based on a font. Very graphic, and she used it - and other styles - upside down, backwards, etc. to great effect. Steve Skaggs used variations of color in his all-one-format pieces. They were rectangular pieces on paper, heavily coated with a clear medium for both sheen and protection, mounted on black in open black wood frames with no glass. Very beautiful...layered passages of lettering in many different styles. The three other artists of the 'five' (from four countries) also had good work - every one in a very different style. It is a wonderful showcase of lettering as art. Laurie's sketchbook journals are so intriguing...snippets of her life and glimpses into her deep range of talents. It was a nice way to end a busy work week. the time I left the gallery, the bridge traffic had cleared away and it was smooth driving all the way home. Serendipity.

I snapped a few shots from the car on my drive home. The view from Main Street west, a view of the old bridge architecture (I remember even as a kid I was fascinated by its symmetry and geometry), and in Jeffersonville a One Way street sign by a fire escape that I thought was an interesting juxtaposition. I also snapped my new piece of art by Susannah Hebert - a glass and copper sunshine. Because I currently have it in my family room/studio rather than in the garden where it will have summer residence, the lovely etched lettering on the sun's face doesn't show up. I finished painting my family room yellow last weekend. I'm glad I bought the Jiffy Steamer to help with the removal of the tacky old wallpaper!

I travel to Savannah and Vidalia GA three days next week. This is my last trip to this client as I am handing it over to a co-worker on this visit. Would love to take this opportunity to visit my aunt and cousins on St. Simon's Island again, but there is never enough time to do all I want to do. I will definitely take my camera though and try to get some good photos of memorable Savannah!