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Monday, April 30, 2007

Let The Game Begin!

In a few minutes here on the west coast in southern California it will be May 1st!

And that means THE CONTEST begins.

All you need to do is visit and leave me a comment during the month of May.

On the last day of the month all the names of those of you who comment will be put into a basket and ONE name will be drawn.

The winner receives a hand bound Coptic stitch journal made by me!

* one entry per person each month *

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A Little Bird Told Me

My Latest Offering...

Journal cover: 4.5" x 5.75"
Paper size: 4.25" x 5.5"
A Coptic stitch journal lies completely flat when open.

Seven signatures of five leaves each (a total of 140 pages if using both sides!).
140 lb Wausau exact index cardstock
Kelly Kilmer says..."this stuff takes a beating!" It is the best paper if you are using this as an art journal - it will stand up to layers of acrylics and it's wonderful for collage work.

Each alternating signature is divided by a wine colored cardstock.
A six-needle Coptic stitch is done with waxed linen thread imported from Belfast in NATURAL and RED. Black eyelets are utilized on the front and back covers.
The bird on the front cover is dimensional using a 'paper glaze' for a beautiful glass like appearance.
This journal will make a wonderful gift to yourself or a friend.
If you are interested in pricing or further information please email me at:
PayPal is accepted.
The journal will be signed and numbered when sold.
Thanks for looking!

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Sunday, April 29, 2007


Saturday, April 28, 2007

Thank You Dear Daughter!

A big THANK YOU to my daughter, Jill.
She changed my Blogger template and created the cool new banner at the top!
What do ya'll think?!?

(That is our Little Blue Cottage and the world famous Wedge on Balboa Peninsula which we can see down the road from home).

Friday, April 27, 2007

Newport - Ensenada International Yacht Race

It was good to see our community gathering for FUN on the water today in the wake of all our recent tragic events in the harbor.
Today was the start of the Newport-Ensenada Yacht Race!
Billed the largest international yacht race in the world it all pretty much comes down to a PARTY in a sea of tequila - along with some serious competition :)

Do you think this guy is interested in winning the race...or maybe just "best hat" award?

Trying to capture a photo of 447 boats, filled with nearly 3,000 sailors, drifting in what will become a sea of tequila is not easy... ;-)

But, it was fun trying! Although the 'official' event took place right down the street from our cottage I went over to the Balboa Peninsula for a different vantage point - and took my photos from the west jetty park and The Wedge watching the boats getting in position for their launch times.

I was there with one of my quieter friends, since I simply wanted to enjoy the scene and take photos!

A lifeguard tower made for the best seat in the house...who would've thought you could get balcony seating in the sand?

If you are hearing the theme song to Gilligan's are RIGHT! This is where it was filmed...right here below LookOut Point...uh, huh, you thought that looked familiar, eh?

I almost expected these bikes to have a heartbeat! Don't they look like they are in love, and leaning on one another?!?!

Our Catalina Flyer comes in from the island as all the other boats head out.
Santa Catalina is the island we look out on from our beach. Can you hear the song..
"twenty-six miles across the sea, Santa Catalina is waiting for me...."?
The name of this boat sums up how everyone will feel by Sunday night when they return from Ensenada...TOO MUCH FUN!! ( and too much tequila!).

*** Update ***

CLICK HERE --> a news link with film footage of the race!

For Dagny

I was over on the Balboa Peninsula earlier today to watch the Newport-Ensenada Yacht Race (a post on that soon!) - and as I was sitting at a red light I realized I had a great shot of The Crab Cooker -- just the "fix" Dagny would appreciate during The OC withdrawl stage. Yes Dagny, this is the place where "Ryan Atwood" worked in the first season....ahhh, the memories....

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Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Art Journals

A 'heads-up' for those who do visual journals - using collage, acrylic's, etc., my upcoming journals are going to have 140# index cardstock -- this paper takes a lickin' and keeps on tickin' will LOVE it. My 'art-sister' Linda turned me on to this paper who learned about it from Kelly and let me tell you rocks!
I have been re-stocking some supplies and will be back to journal making this weekend :)

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Monday, April 23, 2007

Extra! Extra! Read All About It!

These are my first two handbound journals I am offering for purchase.
Each of them is an exposed spine Coptic stitch.
The Coptic stitch allows the journal to lie completely flat - which is especially important for visual journaling, as well as ordinary writing.

If these journals interest you for yourself, or a gift - please email me at:
for prices and any further information you would like to know.

* * * * *
This front cover is an authentic book cover from 1938! It is still covered with the original 'laminated' type cover since that time. Remember: This is from 1938 - so you will see the shelf wear on this cover - yet it is in amazing condition (or I would not have used it!).
The back cover is new - I made it from thick bookboard (archival) and it is covered in an archival paper that compliments the cover and the decade.

Journal cover measures: 4 1/2" x 6 7/8"
Journal paper measures: 4 3/8" x 6 11/16"

(above) Exposed spine with six-needle Coptic stitch. The waxed linen thread is imported from Belfast, Ireland and the colors are BUTTERSCOTCH & BLACK.

(above) Inside paper are alternating signatures of 90# cold-pressed watercolor paper (5 leaves per signature, 4 signatures total) AND 65# fine tooth drawing paper (5 leaves per signature, 4 signatures total). I am generous with my paper :)

(above) Close up of cover illustration.

* * * * *
You Can't Be True!
I love vinyl records and album cover art (we collect!)...sometimes the records are badly damaged...but the covers remain in good condition -- and it is these albums I am using in my journal making.

This is an authentic LP cover from the 1960's - Ken Griffin (at the organ!), the title tune was a big hit in 1948.
Journal cover measures: 8" x 9 5/8"
Journal paper measures: 7 3/4" x 9 3/8"

(above) Front of journal where you can see the copper eyelets as well.

(above) Exposed spine, 8-needle Coptic Binding using imported waxed linen thread from Belfast, Ireland in BLACK & RED!

(above) Back of journal is created from the authentic vintage LP back cover.

(above) Journal paper is a 65# fine tooth drawing paper and 28# copy paper.
10 signatures of 4 leaves each. 5 signatures of each paper type.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Out Of Chaos...

...journals will come forth!
Sometime on Monday I will be posting 2 or 3 handbound one-of-a-kind journals which will be available for purchase.
If you would like to be notified when I post them send me an email:
Please put JOURNALS in the subject line.

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Friday, April 20, 2007

My Generation

I double dog dare ya to watch this video without SMILING :)
I was turned on to this by a totally cool artist / art instructor - Kelly, who I adore!

Be sure to watch 'till the very end!

::::: BREAKING News :::::

This just in...
A clear liquid leaking from the sky has been reported
in Corona del Mar on the coast of Southern California.
Residents are speculating - some are calling it
I can't be sure - it's been so long since I have seen it!
I have taken photos and hope to have them analyzed.
edit UPDATE:
Rain! Rain! Rain!
It is RAIN!
How can you be sure?
See Below:

I am cooking vegetarian chili.
We only eat chili when it's RAINING :)

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Good Things Come In Small Packages - A Monthly Contest!

As if you don't have enough reasons to read my blog - you know, just me being so charming and endlessly interesting. (HEY! I heard that!)...I am going to give you a FUN reason to keep reading!

Starting in May (the month of my birthday) I am going to collect the names of my readers who leave me a comment - and at the end of each month I will put all the names into a hat - oh wait, I don't own a hat...hmmm, into a basket...and have my daughter, granddaughter or some unsuspecting stranger walking past the cottage draw a name.

The winner will receive ...drum roll::::::::::::::::::::
a small (pocket/purse size) one-of-a-kind handbound journal made by...ME!

So ya'll keep reading, and commenting - and tell your friends, and even your enemies...of course I know you are all peace loving children and have no enemies :)

I will remind everyone on the first of May. (Not that your memory may be slipping or anything!).

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

What A Girl Will Do For Bookbinding Supplies!

Yes, I ventured outside our teeny-tiny village of CdM because I found a local store that sold waxed linen bookbinding thread.
Wonders never cease.
I HATE MALLS. Yes, HATE is a harsh word - a word I usually reserve for certain politicians...but I use it freely when I say I HATE MALLS.
So, where do I find myself this afternoon?
In a freakin' 2.8 MILLION square foot mall. You read that right.
2.8 MILLION square feet of over 280 stores.
I took the plunge and went to Paper Source at
South Coast Plaza
Thinking I had parked in the right area...acres and acres of parking with more valets than a 5-star hotel...I talked myself into actually entering...hoping I would not get lost in Oz and find my way home again.
Well, after wandering around, reading those large MALL MAPS (malls should not be large enough to warrant a map!!!!) I realized I needed to cross over a major roadway via something called The Bridge of Flowers..or something to that effect...oh no! I thought, there will be poppies for sure and I may never see Auntie Em again!!!
I was talking to myself (in my head, not out loud Jill!) and hyping myself up that I COULD DO THIS.
I got on the escalator, walked across the 600 foot bridge and landed in ....three more stories of crates and barrels, build-a-bears, and cafes being wary of every turn for flying monkeys.
The place had more sanitation workers than Disneyland. And a merry-go-round that was filled with tourists snapping digitals of everything spinning out of control, including their Mastercards!
There were others like me. Wandering. Dazed. Confused. Looking for yet another escalator to take them down, down, down the rabbit hole.
Finally, I get off the moving stairs and for a moment I expect to see a tram and hear the Disneyland Railroad whistle blowing. But all I see are MORE stores...but THERE...RIGHT front of me....Paper Source!
I wanted to kiss the ground. To exclaim to all the shoppers "EUREKA, I have found it!"...but security was everywhere, and well, you know, I don't really like to attract too much attention to myself :)
Was it worth it?
You bet it wasn't.
I found only 3 colors of thread that I did not order online from my thus far favorite source
But let me tell you -- it is PAPER heaven. And when I am in need of stocking up again on paper...I just may order it ONLINE from them.
I still HATE MALLS!!!!!!!!!

Sunday, April 15, 2007

I found my thrill...

On Blueberry.................Island :)

I practiced on yet another handbound journal today. Nice quiet way to spend a Sunday...the winds were too strong for a walk along the beach -- and I am not fond of chewing sand :)

Roaming around a used bookstore one day I picked up this authentic 1950's copy of The Bobbsey Twins! Anyone who grew up in the same era as I did will remember them!
The inside pages were less than desirable -- but I knew I could UPCYCLE the covers!
I love a journal that feels 'lived in' already -- no need to be fussing and fretting about scuffing the cover - this one is genuine VINTAGE! I of course being a germaphobic have sanitized it completely!!

I have 14 sections of 5 leaves each, alternating between a 65# white sketching paper and 24# blue all purpose copy paper.
The Coptic stitch is done with natural waxed linen thread imported from Belfast.

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Saturday, April 14, 2007

Happy Birthday Mom

April 14th
Mom would have been 91 years young today. And I promise you, she would have still been as cool and hip as she ever was. She probably would have wanted The Beatles playing on the stereo as she celebrated the day. And she would have gotten up, held on to her walker...and danced.
I cannot look at a flower and not think of Mom.
And anything in the violet and purple scheme was her favorite. I took the photo below on Thursday at Crescent Bay in Laguna Beach where these grow wildly right above the ocean...all the while thinking of Mom.
She loved the Goldenrod Footbridge around the corner from the cottage when she moved here to CdM. The cascading geraniums were one of her favorites. Don't tell anyone, but she would reach up from the transport chair as I took her for a walk and grab a 'slip' to plant when she'd get home :) My hands graze the flowers each time I walk over the bridge - and think of Mom.

Along the walk to LookOut Point beautiful roses grew in one of the neighborhood yards. And she would breathe in their sweet scent. While walking home the other day I spotted a ladybug on one..and remembered when I was a kid how Mom would say "don't brush her away, she is good luck when she lands on you"!
Happy Birthday Mom. I love you. And I miss you like crazy.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007


:::::All major local news teams arrive on Ocean Blvd.:::::

My daughter is blogging about the tragedy that struck our beach on Tuesday, April 10th.
A man and woman were fishing off the east jetty (the entrance to Newport Harbor, which is down the street from us) - and they were swept away by a huge wave.

Read her account here:

Jill's Blog

These are some photos of the days events.

A big swell arrives at The Wedge (15-20 foot waves).

If there was sound here you would be amazed at the pounding these waves produced!

With divers in the water, our local harbor Patrol, the U.S. Coast Guard on the water and in the air the search launched.

Surf on this side of the east jetty at Corona del Mar State Beach has not been like this is many years ...local surfers could not resist...

The ABC-7 Eyewitness News chopper hovered over our cottage in the morning, awaiting air clearance from the U.S. Coast Guard.

By late afternoon the walls of water continued to build. The sets were building up further and further out.

Rick Chambers of KCAL-9, one of our most outstanding local reporters interviews our Orange County Sheriff Spokesperson.