Wednesday, December 30, 2009


I thought it was about time to post some of the photographs that I've taken. I've been inspired by a great nature photographer that I met recently. This first one is taken at Ladew Topiary Gardens, Rose Garden. The second is taken at Virginia Beach.

Here is one of my favorite quotes:
"You can't help but wonder at just how sweet and sad and innocent all moments in life are rendered by the tripping of a camera's shutter, for at that point the future is still unknown and has yet to hurt us, and also for that brief moment our poses are accepted as honest."
- Generation X

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Fruit Jellies

I was going to post a picture of the fabulous fruit jellies that I made for Solstice this year, but unfortunately, they didn't turn out. I'm not sure what went wong except that I used liquid pectin instead of powdered. I did some research online to figure out how much of the liquid I needed, but maybe there was technique differeneces too.

So instead, I'm going to post about a book from my childhood. A story I used to think was about me. A story I have read aloud and recorded to send to my new niece for her first Christmas.

My name is Katrina Christine which is similar enough to a child to be Christina Katerina. Christina liked all sorts of things but she especially liked boxes. All sorts of boxes. One day Christina's mother gets a brand new refrigerator and gives Christina the box. The story chronicles the fun that Christina and her sometime friend Fats Watson have with the box.

When I was growing up I used boxes to make everything. Doll houses, boats for the backyard, cars for my 'barbies', bunkers for my GI Joes, castles, clubhouses. And I had a sometimes friend Frank that lived just down the street. So of course the story was about me!

I've read the story aloud along with several other favorites from my childhood. I know that my sister's little one will have her own favorite stories but at least this way she'll get to know my voice even though I live so far away.

Happy Holidays!!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Shhh... Don't tell!

I've been making these adorable magnets and tacks out of my Great Grandmother's old jewelery and other found items. I'm going to give them as gifts, so don't tell. :) Great Grandma Hazel was quite a character. She lived through the Great Depression and nearly made it to the Great Recession (I've heard that is what our current economic situation is being called). No one really appreciated her, um, hoarding habits. Until now that is. Waste not, want not! Frugal was an understatement when it came to my Great Grandma. She 'collected' everything, found beauty in the strangest things, stashed money in every sock, film canister, and book. She took advantage of every bit of aid that was available. She's been gone 3 years this coming January and my mom is still going through all her stuff. You can see each generation's lives in her closets. Great Great Grandma's old dresses, Great Grandma's clothes from every decade, Grandma's baby clothes, and my mother and her siblings clothes from the 60's. I don't know if she ever had any of my clothes, but I wouldn't be surprised.
There are too many stories to retell here. Trips to South Dakota, her beautiful chaotic garden, all those chihuahuas, her house packed to the gills and overflowing with doll heads, pepper mills, peppermint schnapps, photos, pill bottles, cereal boxes, newspapers, clothes. . .
I guess this story could be any body's. Most people who survived the Great Depression have their coping mechanisms. But how many people knew their Great Grandma? There is a five generation picture of me with my mom, Grandma, Great Grandma and Great Great Grandma. I have no children, but my cousin Mindy does. Just before Great Grandma died, we got another five generation picture of Travis, Mindy, my mom's brother Jim, Grandma, and Great Grandma. It makes me wonder if another five generation picture is in store for Travis.
I don't know what Great Grandma would think of these magnets and tacks, but I'd like to think that she would find them beautiful. It is my way of connecting to generations past. Each member of my family will get a few as a remembrance of Great Grandma Hazel. Probably not this year, I'm not done yet!
Happy Holidays!!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

25 Things I want to do before I die

1. Travel (everywhere)
2. Scuba diving
3. Surfing
4. Swim with the Dolphins
5. Visit a volcano
6. Japanese Tea Ceremony
7. Write a book
8. Visit an ashram in India
9. Mardi Gras in New Orleans
10. Oktoberfest in Germany
11. Pyramids in Egypt
12. Stonehenge
13. Go skinnydipping
14. See the Northern Lights
15. Get Professionally Certified
16. Take a photography class
17. Go to school for Art, Herbal Medicine, or Cooking
18. Be interviewed on TV
19. Go to a retreat
20. Design and build my dream house
21. Learn to meditate
22. Learn French
23. Visit every state
24. Read all the books on my to-read list
25. Be successfully self-employed

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Check out Leonardo's Sister's Idea of the Month for September!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Good Food

Boy, I've been MIA for over a month! Sorry guys. Most of my creative energies have been put into cooking lately. Cold melon soup, lemonade blueberry popsicles, stuffed peppers, quinoa custard, cranberry almond scones. . .
I've also been developing my Powerhouse recipes. Recipes that have three or more so-called superfoods. Now there is no definitive guide as to what a superfood is. But there are sources all over the internet and here is what I've found: bananas, blackcurrants, goji berries, cacao, blueberries, raspberries, acai, yacon root, watercress, papaya, soy, flax seed, broccoli, alfalfa sprouts, oranges, spinach, tomatoes, walnuts, sea vegetables, avocado, salmon, green tea, beans, oats, turkey, pumpkin, yogurt, mangosteen, chia seeds, quinoa, and pomegranate. Some of these you've probably never heard of. But most are available at your natural food store. And I've been developing recipes, some with eight or more superfoods!
What makes it a superfood? Foods with an especially high phytonutrient content. So lots of antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, and other properties that we may not even completely understand like disease fighting, fertility, and weightloss. For example, chia seeds are high in fiber, omega-3 fatty acids, and studies show that it slows the conversion of carbohydrates into sugar in your body. That effectively lowers the Glycemic Index of any food that you eat with the chia seeds!
I have a couple ideas for art in the works, so hopefully I'll be posting something a little more visually stimulating soon!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

You Can't Take It With You

You Can't Take It With You

Eating, Munching, Chewing

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Cosmic Energy

The birth of an idea in your mind and the birth of a celestial star in distant space, both arise from the same latent field of cosmic energy.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

25 Favorite Quotes

25 Favorite Quotes
1. If you are a dreamer, come in. If you are a dreamer, a wisher, a liar, a hope-er, a pray-er, a magic bean buyer. . . If you are a pretender, come sit by my fire. For we have some flax golden tales to spin. Come in! Come in! - Shel Silverstien
2. The significant problems we face cannot be solved at the same level of thinking we were at when we created them. – Albert Einstein
3. If there is any principle of the Constitution that more imperatively calls for attachment than any other it is the principle of free thought, not free thought for those who agree with us but freedom for the thought we hate. – Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes
4. Though I do not agree with what you say, I will defend to the death your right to say it. - Voltaire
5. Your friends will know you better in the first moment you meet than your acquaintances will know you in a thousand years. – Illusions: The Adventures of a Reluctant Messiah
6. Your only obligation in any lifetime is to be true to yourself. Being true to anyone else or anything else is not only impossible but the mark of a fake messiah. – Illusions: The Adventures of a Reluctant Messiah
7. . . . you can’t help but wonder at how sweet and sad and innocent all moments in life are rendered by the tripping of a camera’s shutter, for at that point the future is still unknown and has yet to hurt us, and also for that brief moment, our poses are accepted as honest. – Generation X
8. What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters, compared to what lies within us. – Ralph Waldo Emerson
9. At the height of laughter, the universe is flung into a kaleidoscope of new possibilities. – Jean Houston
10. The meeting of two personalities is like the contact of two chemical substances: if there is any reaction, both are transformed. – C. G. Jung
11. And all the world will be your enemy . . . and whenever they catch you, they will kill you . . . but first they must catch you. – Watership Down
12. You will do foolish things, but do them with enthusiasm. – Colette
13. We have built a greenhouse – a human creation – where there once bloomed a sweet and wild garden. – Bill McKibben
14. “But it isn’t easy,” said Pooh. “Because Poetry and Hums aren’t things which you get, they are things which get you. And all you can do is to go where they can find you.” - The House at Pooh Corner
15. When you are a Bear of Very Little Brain, and you Think of Things, you find sometimes that a Thing which seemed very Thingish inside you is quite different when it gets out into the open and has other people looking at it. - The House at Pooh Corner
16. To design with flowers. To paint with clouds. To write with water. To register the May wind, the fall of a leaf. To work for a storm. To anticipate a glacier. To bend the wind. To direct the water and the light. – Nils Udo
17. The truth will not penetrate a preoccupied mind. – Charles Darwin
18. The truth is that human beings are now the dominant species in all the world’s ecosystems and the most powerful geological force on Earth. From this perspective, we do not have environmental problems, the biosphere has a people problem. – William Rees
19. The true mission of religion is to help people manifest the power within themselves to overcome their difficulties and be happy.
20.The birth of an idea in your mind an the birth of a celestial star in distant space both arise from the same latent field of cosmic energy.
21. It is not our abilities which determine who we are. It is our choices. – Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
22. In one of the stars I shall be living, in one of them I shall be laughing, and so it will be as if all the stars were laughing when you look at the sky at night. – The Little Prince
23. There are only three colors, ten digits, and seven notes; its what we do with them that’s important. – Ruth Ross
24.All of the most successful human being I’ve known were inwardly at war with themselves. Their turmoil was at least as great as our own, and sometimes greater. What distinguished thes leaders was not some inner peace but rather how they learned to organize their lives around a noble ambition and to focus on it. – Walter Anderson
25. The threshold between right and wrong is pain. – Dalai Lama

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Inspire Me Thursday - Child Art

I created this piece for a children's story I once heard, The Mighty Little Mouse. It is watercolor, colored pencil, ink, cut paper, and cotton (for the dandelion seeds!)

Friday, June 12, 2009

New Places


Saturday, May 30, 2009

25 Favorite Plants

25 of My Favorite Plants
1. Katsuratree (Cercidiphyllum japonicum)
2. Sweetgum (Liquidambar styraciflua)
3. Dawn Redwood (Metasequoia glyptostroboides)
4. American Beech (Fagus grandifolia)
5. Burr Oaks (Quercus macrocarpa)
6. Serviceberry (Amelanchier canadensis)
7. Redbud (Cercis canadensis)
8. Flowering Dogwood (Cornus florida)
9. River Birch (Betula nigra)
10. Magnolia (Magnolia species)
11. Variegated Redtwig Dogwood (Cornus racemosa)
12. Lilac (Syringa vulgaris)
13. Hydrangea (Hydrangea macrophylla)
14. Crapemyrtle (Lagerstroemia indica)
15. American Cranberrybush Viburnum (Viburnum trilobum)
16. Lily of the Valley
17. Peony
18. Bleeding Heart
19. Anemone
20 Daylily
21. Purple Coneflower
22. Ferns
23. Wild Ginger
24. Clematis
25. Spring Ephemerals

Friday, May 22, 2009

Random Acts of Creativity Friday - Creative Awakenings

Healing Prayer from Eagle Woman

May our eyes remain open even in the face of tragedy.

May we not become disheartened.

May we find in the dissolution of our apathy and denial,the cup of the broken heart.

May we discover the gift of the fire burning in the inner chamber of our being--burning great and bright enough to transform any poison.

May we offer the power of our sorrow to the service of something greater than ourselves.

May our guilt not rise up to form yet another defensive wall.

May the suffering purify and not paralyze us.

May we realize the greatness of our sorrow and not run from its touch or flame.

May clarity be our ally and wisdom our support.

May our wrath be cleansing, cutting through the confusion of denial and greed.

May we not be afraid to see or speak our truth.

May the bleakness of the wasteland be dispelled.

May the soul's journey be revealed and the true hunger fed.

May we be forgiven for what we have forgotten and blessed with the remembrance of who we really are.

--Found on The Terma Collective site

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Inspiration of the Month - May

Sheri Gaynor is the featured artist for Leonardo's Sister's Inspiration of the Month for May. Check it out!

Monday, April 27, 2009

25 Favorite Songs

In no particular order!
My 25 Favorite Songs
1. The Boxer – Simon and Garfunkel
2. Hands Clean – Alanis Morissette
3. Infinity Hymn – Stuart Davis
4. The Christians and the Pagans – Dar Williams
5. Lithium – Evanescence
6. On My Own – Les Miserables
7. Bring Me to Life – Evanescence
8. Head Over Feet – Alanis Morissette
9. If Everyone Cared – Nickleback
10. Bleed It Out – Linkin Park
11. Iowa – Dar Williams
12. House at Pooh Corner – Loggins and Messina
13. My Little Town – Simon and Garfunkle
14. Rhymes and Reasons – John Denver
15. Fidelity – Regina Spektor
16. If I had $1,000,000 – Barenaked Ladies
17. I Got a Name – Jim Croche
18. Enter Sandman – Metalica
19. I Still Believe – Miss Saigon
20. Amelie Soundtrack
21. Brown Eyed Girl
22. Could We Start Again, Please – JC Superstar
23. Starry Night – Don McLean
24. American Pie – Don McLean
25. Anything by Stuart Davis

Monday, April 20, 2009

Random Acts of Creativity Friday-Creative Awakenings

Picture yourself in a boat on a river,
With tangerine trees and marmalade skies.
Somebody calls you,
you answer quite slowly,
A girl with kaleidoscope eyes.

Cellophane flowers of yellow and green,
Towering over your head.
Look for the girl with the sun in her eyes,
And she's gone.
~The Beatles

Friday, April 10, 2009

Inspire Me Thursday: Spice

For this week's Inspire Me Thursday: Spice: A spice rack that I designed and my sweetheart built for our kitchen.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Wildflowers and Weeds

In my life
I have encountered
Beautiful Roses
And exotic buds
But so far
I think I have most enjoyed
The wildflowers
And the weeds.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

25 Favorite Movies

Here they are. In no particular order. My 25 Favorite Movies!

1. Matrix series
2. Mystery Men
3. Galaxy Quest
4. Lord of the Rings Trilogy
5. Harry Potter Movies
6. Star Wars Trilogy
7. Fiddler on the Roof
8. Schindler’s List
9. Grease
10. The Princess Bride
11. West Side Story
12. The Quiet Man
13. Breakfast at Tiffany’s
14. Like Water for Chocolate
15. Casablanca
16. Gone With the Wind
17. Miracle on 34th Street
18. Blade Runner
19. Highlander
20. The Wizard of Oz
21. The Sound of Music
22. African Queen
23. All About Eve
24. The Color Purple
25. Amelie

Friday, March 20, 2009

Leonardo's Sister

I just sent out my first wave of brochures. I'm so excited (and nervous). The next wave will go out on Monday. Leonardo's Sister is finally off and running! (If you don't get a brochure and you want one, send me an email at and I'll get one right out to you!) I've been working on this for the last several months and I feel like I'm finally ready. My website is up. I have brochures and business cards. I've had a few customers. My life has been pushing me in this direction for a while now and I'm finally ready.

Monday, March 16, 2009

25 of My Favorite Things

25 of My Favorite Things

1. The smell of snow
2. Strawberries picked fresh from my garden
3. Anything picked fresh
4. The prisms in my office window on a sunny day
5. The smell of warm pine woods and the soft pine needles under my feet
6. Holding hands
7. Art Journals
8. Coloring in my coloring books
9. Crown molding
10. Used bookstores
11. Ice Cream
12. Presents and surprises
13. Tales about fairies, sprites, nymphs, and all sorts of mythical beings
14. Trinkets, marbles, charms, things that fit in pockets
15. Handmade hats and scarves made especially for me
16. Violets with the morning dew still on them
17. The whole experience of chocolate
18. Wearing my pajamas all day
19. The china tea set my dad brought back from Okinawa
20. Sitting by the woodstove drinking mulled wine
21. The smell of overripe apples in the dappled sun under a beautiful apple tree
22. Clear dancing streams wandering through meadows of wildflowers
23. Warm sun on a chilly day
24. Dancing to the music in my head
25. Dreaming in the half awake state before I get out of bed

Monday, March 9, 2009

Creative Awakenings: Art of Intention for March

Creative Awakenings Book and Website! Fabulous. So I'm going to do the year long Creative Awakenings plan. Creating an Art of Intention every month and putting it into my Book of Dreams. This is March's Art of Intention. My intention is to face my fear of failure when it comes to art. I have realized that I give up too easily when it comes to my creative endevours. The slightest negative comment, in my head or by someone else, throws me out of whack and I find it impossible to continue. So my intention is to fight for what I want. To not give up so easily. To continue to create. So on the first Monday of every month, or sometime soon thereafter, you can expect to see my Art of Intention posted here.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

25 of My Favoirte Books

The second installment of 25 lists of 25 things.
I'm sure I've overlooked some but here it is:

25 Favorite Books

1. Little Women – Louisa May Alcott
2. Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit - JRR Tolkien
3. Anything by Barbara Kingsolver
4. Clan of the Cave Bear series – Jean M. Auel
5. Dragonriders of Pern series – Anne McCaffery
6. Dune – Frank Herbert
7. Harry Potter series – JK Rowling
8. Watership Down – Richard Adams
9. Winnie-the-Pooh books – AA Milne
10. A Child’s Garden – Molly Dannenmaier
11. Night Noises and Other Moll and Troll Stories - Tony Johnston
12. The Artist’s Way – Julia Cameron
13. The Vampire Chronicles – Anne Rice
14. The Chronicles of Narnia – C. S. Lewis
15. Alice in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass – Lewis Carroll
16. The Giving Tree and Where the Sidewalk Ends– Shel Silverstein
17. Grimm’s Fairy Tales – The Brothers Grimm
18. Isaac Asimov’s Short Stories
19. Eat, Pray, Love – Elizabeth Gilbert
20. Christina Katerina and the Box – Patricia Lee Gauch
21. Illusions: Adventures of a Reluctant Messiah – Richard Bach
22. The Tao of Pooh – Benjamin Hoff
23. The Mists of Avalon – Marion Zimmer Bradley
24. A Wrinkle in Time – Madeleine L’Engle
25. Detour: My Bipolar Road Trip in 4-D – Lizzie Simon

Monday, March 2, 2009

Creative Awakenings: Random Acts of Creativity

I found this great website, Creative Awakenings. The Random Acts of Creativity prompt for last Friday was: Perhaps all the dragons of our lives are princesses who are only waiting to see us once beautiful and brave. - Rainer Maria Rilke

Friday, February 27, 2009

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

I'm not liking my desk job much lately. Feeling a little restless.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

25 Random Things About Me

I'm creating a list of 25 lists of 25. This was inspired by my facebook note 25 Random Things About Me. So this is my first list of 25:

25 Random Things about Me

1. I love to whistle to Cecilia by Simon and Garfunkel.
2. I drink 6-8 cups of herbal or green tea everyday.
3. I have seven brothers and sisters. Nine if you count step-siblings.
4. I was adopted by my dad and so were 4 of my siblings.
5. My favorite food is strawberries dipped in chocolate tofu mousse.
6. Some of my favorite childhood books were Christina Katerina and the Box, Night Noises and Other Mole and Troll Stories, and The Monster at the End of This Book. I thought Christina Katerina was about me. :)
7. Some of my favorite children’s books now are Click Clack Moo Cows That Type and Hey There Ant.
8. I used to practice making faces in the mirror as a child.
9. I still dream about living off the land, being self sufficient.
10. My secret dream is being famous.
11. I love coloring in my coloring books, wearing my pajamas all day, lying in the grass, warm rain in the autumn, rainbows, lying in bed at night and talking to my sweetheart, the sun shinning on the prisms in my office, the smell of snow, and the whole experience of chocolate
12. I have a bulletin board in my office that I fill with things that I want more of in my life. Pictures, magazine pages, cards, quotes, and any other images that inspire me to be who I want to be.
13. My favorites are purple, lily of the valley, lilac, gardening, rabbits, spring, and chocolate.
14. Sitting on my back stoop early in the morning eating breakfast is one of my great joys. I wish I did it more often.
15. In my life I have had rabbits, rats, mice, gerbils, hamsters, ferrets, cats, dogs, fish, sharks, newts, frogs, fiddler crabs, and crawfish.
16. The Metamorphosis of Narcissus is my favorite Salvador Dali piece.
17. I started writing poetry when I was very young. I kept it in a red faux suede book that my mom made for me.
18. When I was 13 my dad gave me a yellow rose for my birthday. He sent it to the house and I secretely wished he had sent it to school so I could gloat over the people I didn't like.
19. I have been with my sweetheart for almost 13 years.
20. Sometimes I wish I could turn my brain off.
21. Infinity Hymn is my favorite song by Stuart Davis.
22. I once made love outside during a solar eclipse.
23. I need 8-10 hours of sleep every night.
24. I only had three wisdom teeth.
25. I want to visit an ashram in India before I die. I want to meditate and do yoga. I want to have a yoga guru.

Coming Soon: 25 of My Favorite Books

Saturday, February 21, 2009


I was having a rough day the other day and my dearest friend suggested a cup of tea. She was so right! I love tea. Jasmine Green and Good Earth Original are my favorites. The warmth, the comfort. I created this collage to help me re-center myself. I think the quote says it all.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Inspire Me Thursday: Silver

Silver has been represented by the symbol of the crescent Moon for centuries. Werewolves, or Lycanthopes, are noted for their vulnerability to silver weapons. And werewolves are closely tied to the phases of the moon. This is my interpretation of this week's inspiration: Silver. I created this in Photoshop. The quote is from The Wolf Man.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Inspire Me Thursday: Lace

I just found a great blog, Inspire Me Thursday. This week's inspiration was Lace. This is my interpretation: Lace Cookies. I didn't have time to make any so I don't have a picture, but here is the recipe:

Classic Lace Cookies
1/2 cup almond meal
5 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/4 cup firmly-packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons light corn syrup
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
Pinch salt
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
In a medium saucepan over low heat, heat the butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar, and corn syrup until the butter melts and the sugar dissolves, stirring often. Increase the heat to medium high and, stirring constantly, bring the mixture JUST to a boil. Immediately remove the pan from the heat and stir in the flour and salt until incorporated. Stir in the almond meal, vanilla extract, and almond extract if using.
Drop the batter by the teaspoon, 3 inches apart, on the prepared baking sheets Bake the cookies until evenly light brown, approximately 8 to 10 minutes until the cookies spread, become thin, and take on a deep golden color.
When you remove the cookies from the oven, allow them to cool for 30 seconds to 1 min. With a spatula, remove the cookies from the baking sheet and place on a rolling pin, glass, or other curved object. As the cookies cool, they will take on the curve of the rolling pin. If desired, once cool, dip the edges of the cookies in melted chocolate.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

My Online Art Journal

I am purple. I am many shades. Violet, lavender, periwinkle, amethyst, lilac, blue-violet. I am purple, variations, nuances, complexities. Red-violet, ultraviolet, purple-black, Crown chakra, blueberries. Ephemeral, dark, adaptation. I am all these things and more. I am purple.

I've been journaling off and on for my whole life. My first diaries were made from cutting that old striped green and white computer paper into blocks and stapleing them together. I wrote about my sister, the kids at school, my parents. During high school English class, it was a class assignment to journal for 10 min at the beginning of each class. I poured out all my teenage angst onto those pages. My first love, betrayed friendships, etc. Then during college, I did the Artist's Way as an independant study. As part of that book, you must write morning pages - three of them- every morning. I filled journal upon journal with insights, turmoil, experimentation, quotes, poetry, observations, stories, dreams. . .

Now I want to start a different kind of journal. A visual journal. To have an outlet for my overflowing creativity. So this is my online art journal.

Friday, February 13, 2009

I am Purple

Once I wrote a poem for a get-in-touch-with-your-inner-artist book. The activity was to pick a color and write a few sentences describing yourself in the first person. This is the poem I wrote:
I am Royal. I am Elegant. I am fun, crazy, exciting. I am purple. Delicate fragile orchid. Strong, unrefined thistle. I am a violet, small and beautiful and prolific and useful. I am grapes, succulent and juicy. And wine, complex and warming. I am Mom's afghan, cozy and soft. I am the evening sky, like velvet, stunning, beautiful. I am purple.
A few years later in another attempt to get in touch with my inner artist, I created this poster.