Thursday, January 29, 2009


I made a fabulous lunch today that was so easy. After a trip to the Berkeley Bowl, I was famished. What I needed was something quick. One of my favorite food blogs is Orangette. I had read about her cabbage with hot sauce and had picked up some sambal oelek at the Bowl. My plan was that it would be a quick vegetable dish for supper. This is all that was left when I remembered to take a picture.

A quick stir-fry of sliced cabbage, fennel, sambal oelek to taste (I started with 1/2 teaspoon) and soy sauce...

Saturday, January 24, 2009


This is how I feel about art.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Gentleness, 2009 and Winter WIP

I have toyed with the idea of goals for 2009 but have had no real desire to blog about them. I am embracing GENTLENESS as my word for the year (a la Christine Kane). Last year I found that to be very useful. My word for 2008 was Focus and I actually remembered the word, re-evaluated it, and re-interpreted it throughout the year.

I am really unhappy with the pictures I make for my blog. I have repeatedly told myself that I would do something about this and 2009 will be the year that this happens. I am reading a

Photoshop Elements book and I birthday-gifted myself with a copy of Gloria Hansen's book, Digital Essentials. So I guess I'm blogging about goals after all. I have been impressed that putting something down in black and white makes it more of a commitment and that is a good thing.

After reading Christine Thresh's most recent post, I decided that I really had to post something about my work.

The G6 theme for our next meeting later this month is Winter. We are still challenging ourselves to respond to a theme but it is optional. And I think that the 12 x 12 format is becoming optional. I like the idea of working in a smaller format if that's what happens. I have been playing with bits of wool and yarn discovered in my massive "studio cleanup." I had some hand felting needles and I made a postcard-sized view from my kitchen. Winter in my No. California garden is very green but not in a sunny way.

I cut the small piece into thirds and "applied" it to a piece of wool felt. I am contemplating purchasing needle felting machine. Yesterday, I test-drove the Pfaff 350P embellisher, and I brought this along to see how it would work and this is the result, unfinished. Only the center section was felted by machine. Much quicker. It was fun. This WIP is a scan which is also much quicker than taking a photograph.

Monday, January 05, 2009

Sandhill Cranes

This fabulous picture was taken by Bill Schmoker who kindly permitted me to post it here. I was hoping to have some images of my own but quickly realized the inadequacy of my equipment.

Saturday, we drove up to the Lodi, CA, area
, about 60+ miles from home to see the Sandhill Cranes. Rick had read Carolyn Jones's article in the SF Chron last week about these wonderful birds.

We took the
scenic route: 680 north to Hwy 4. We took CA - 160 across the Delta to CA - 12. We waved to Christine at Winnowings on her island out there. On our route we saw lots of birds, including raptors, egrets, and probably swans.

It was a cold, clear day and lots of other people read the article, too, and joined us at the windy Phil and
Marilyn Isenberg Sandhill Crane Reserve which is actually on Woodbridge Road, north of Lodi. Because of the huge turnout, there was no organized tour but two volunteers and one person from the Department of Fish and Game were there with lots of info. California budget cuts to F&G prevent the department from taking tour reservations.

The "birders" all shared info at the Reserve South Unit meeting area on Woodbridge Road. We did not go to the North Site for the fly-in at sunset but we poked around nearby county roads adjacent to farmlands until after sunset and saw squadrons of birds stitched against the darkening sky.

This was our first trip to see these marvelous birds but I'm sure it won't be our last. Good binoculars are on my wish list.

The International Crane Foundation has pictures and some audio clips of the cranes' vocalizations.

Greater Sandhill Cranes are a protected species in
California. Lesser Sandhill Cranes are also seen in this area.

Check out many amazing
sandhill crane pictures at Bill Schmoker's sandhill crane page.

If you go, good maps are a must. Google maps provide good detail. We saw many birds on Cotta Road and Guard Road farms.