Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Don't forget the 621 Art Auction this Saturday!

Hot Tropical Nights Series - All that Jazz 
vitreous enamels in kiln fired glass


This is my donation for the Auction.  There are many artists participating.  Hope to see you there!  

621 17th Annual Art Auction 
Preview Party and Auction

Saturday, October 15th from 5:30 to 9:30pm.

Admission to the event is $10 / $5 for donating artists

There will be heavy appetizers, refreshments, entertainment, and an exciting line up of art available for viewing and bidding.

Silent Auction will end at 7pm

Live Auction will begin at 7:30pm. Live Auction paddle fee is $10.

To View and Bid on the Silent Auction, Oct 8-15-- Gallery Hours: Thursday- Sunday 1-5 pm

please visit for more details!!!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Happiness is. . .

Taffy and Me

Sandy and Me

    "Happiness is a little kitten, a faithful dog,  a summer day."
   As a child, and I admit  I had a wonderful childhood, 'everyday-things' brought me a lot of joy.  I didn't realize I was joyful at the time, but I remember the happiness I felt when I was engaged in certain activities or just daydreaming!
   I loved finger painting and making mud pies when I was little. And what little girl didn’t like sitting in the grass and making clover flower necklaces and bracelets?!  I also loved my cat, Taffy, and later on my dog, Sandy!  (We were best buddies).

   I really enjoyed "putting on plays."  I would get my hand puppet ( a little lion  who was always the hero)  and then line up my dolls, side by side (in appropriate wardrobe), to begin "the story.” They each had a role - singing, dancing, crying, laughing. . . but always a happy ending!

   I  got a Fort Apache set one Christmas (only  a certain age group will  remember that TV show).  I threw all of the soldiers away and just made up stories in which the horses all had a part to play! They galloped, ran, fell in love, and raced -  all those things that "horses liked to do!"    

   One of my favorite pastimes was playing with a View Master (does anyone remember those)?  I would lie on my back in the grass, load the View master with images from Marine Land (the white circular disks had little tiny transparencies around the edge) and when you held the View Master up to the sun and looked through it, you felt like you were right there under the water!  It was wonderful!

   I enjoyed hearing Mom read to me before I started to school, and to this day, I remember when the mailman deliver two Junior Instructors - hardback storybooks with nature tales and craft projects. She let me pick the 1st story  - and then she read "Mr. Wiggle Woggle" to me.  

   I always enjoyed coloring when I was small.  Getting a new "box of 48"s (Crayola crayons) was exhilarating for me. . . I loved  to open them for the first time and smell that new crayon smell!  It was the best!  My Mom still gets a new box of crayons for me every now and then, because she knows  how much I love them!

   I had a lot of fun making t-shirt dolls with my grandmother, Mama Willis.  She would also make hot dogs after school and hot fudge sundaes, too.   I loved playing with Papa Willis's cigar box full of pencils.  He did accounting for small businesses and always needed sharp writing implements.  He was  a tailor, too, and I loved sitting at the treadle sewing machine - pushing it up and down as fast as I could . . .(I 'm sure that was good for it)!  But he never made me stop.  Mama Willis could also grow anything.  .  . food,  flowers, trees, bushes and Papa could make anything from wood or other materials.  She had a lovely garden  with a bridge and a wishing well that Papa made.  They were both creative in different ways -  I still have a beautiful salmon colored necklace that looks like some type of coral.  It is actually cantaloupe seeds that were dyed and then tiny holes were placed in them for stringing! They both had a hand in that!  It is over 50 years old.   

   My maternal grandparents, Mama and Papa Hodge lived on their farm and I loved visiting there. There was a real functioning well on the back porch with a bucket, which always fascinated me.  There was also an outhouse!   Mama Hodge use to love to brush my hair and she would also let me play the piano.  However, as soon as we would arrive at the farm, I would run straight to one of the barns and start looking for kittens in the hay (those mama cats were so clever, sometimes I could find where the kittens were hidden and sometimes I couldn't)!  If I found them, and if they weren't too little,  I would play with them for a while (I was always told that it would "make the kittens sick" if I played with them when they were very small).  Then I would wander out in the fields with one of the dogs, ride the old mule, help gather eggs from the hen house, pick a few collard greens, and swing in the old tire swing out back. Later on, I might climb the ladder up to the hay loft and just sit up there looking out over my grandfather’s farmland, daydreaming, until we were called for dinner. . .
   These thoughts and childhood memories came flooding back today.  I was walking around outside, enjoying the beautiful weather, watering the garden, listening to the birds and squirrels,  watching our cats napping in the sun and  preparing to make something in the studio.

  Those things that make me happy haven't  changed much - My husband and I have now been together for my entire adult life and we have been very happy - so my life situations have changed in degrees.  But I find that those things that made me happy as a child, "something to do, something to love" still bring me joy.   It has little to do with money and those things that money can buy.    Maybe less  really is more . . .

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Shout out to My Friend, with Thanks!

I have had a productive day.  First, here at home and then in my friend's studio!

So Jaye, thanks for letting me watch the process while you worked.  I really learned a lot.  I think your piece will be beautiful after  it is fired!

Here is something I think you will enjoy!
If you like Johnny Depp (and  from our earlier discussion I know you do) and  Radiohead. . . you will love this video.  Enjoy!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Happy Valentine's Day!

 "Los Dos"
painting in kiln-fired glass

What a beautiful day!  I woke up with my Valentine, the sun is shining,  the sky is a beautiful blue and the weatherman has promised a warmer day!

My husband surprised me this weekend for Valentine's Day.   He hired Ed, the "solutions man," and a friend, to install  outdoor lighting on the long ramp leading up to the house and around the deck.  It is both pretty and subtle.  We do live by the woods and the nights are particularly lovely.  It is really nice. 

I surprised him with a bottle of Johnny Walker (Green) and a radio controlled helicopter.   I understand the helicopter will have a slight learning curve before one can operate it successfully!  It should be fun, however. 

We have a belated Valentine to pick up at the end of the month.  Chuck surprised me (again) when we went to see Ron Yrabedra's exhibition at LeMoyne.  He bought "The Musicians."  I  am so excited to bring it home!
I hope you and your Valentine have a good day!


Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Ah Yes, Another Birthday and It is Time to Wear Purple

 My January birthday follows quickly on the heels of a new year, and so it seems like an appropriate time for personal reflection and insight.  As I look back on last year's posts, I realize that, with only a few exceptions, the most important things in my heart haven’t changed. I have borrowed previous entries, embellished others, and I have also added some new thoughts.   

I am glad to be where I am.  I'm not concerned, worried, or conflicted about my age, my looks, or my habits! Those things have a way of taking care of themselves with little assistance from me!  I’m happy and content with my life; however, I am still curious, and still looking for the next adventure!

I'm in love with my husband and I am glad that my Mom is our next door neighbor.  

I am proud that Mom is always trying new things and I am constantly amazed at her innate ability to do just about anything she puts her mind to, really!  I hope she knows how lucky we feel that she is our Mom.

I have been thrilled to see my niece, Katie, and her husband, Chris, become such good parents to their little sons, Jamie and Jaxson! What a beautiful family they are!   

I have always been proud of my brother, Monty, proud of his accomplishments, his sense of humor, and his loyalty to family and country.  I have been delighted to watch as he and my sister-in-law, Linda, have become the doting (and terrific) grandparents that they are!

The animals who share our home (all cats, for now) – Yam, Roundface, Bump, and Purrble, are so special to us and we try to provide the love and nurturing environment that they deserve.  Although we lost Shade in December, we loved his sweet spirit for 21 years. He lived a 'series of 9 lives' and had a happy life. 

I continue to take particular pleasure in observing my cats as they go about “the business of being a cat!”
They are natural clowns, with a special touch of grace and agility.  Their antics, infused with joy and curiosity, are so much fun to watch!  And watch them I do!
As a child, I use to love to lie down on the grass, look up at the sky, and watch the clouds float by – I still do.  However, now I do not lie down on the grass – it is harder to get up (!) and, since this is Florida and not North Carolina, the fire ants can have their preferred seating!  A chaise lounge or hammock will do fine for me.  

I am still fascinated by the smaller worlds of butterflies, spiders, ants, lady bugs, and yes little lizards and snakes whenever I see them in the woods or in the yard!  And who has not thought about how it must feel to soar over the tree tops like our feathered friends?

I am interested in all of God's creatures - great and small - those that fly - or walk - or crawl.  I had an ant farm when I was very young.  It was growing and progressing well.  I kept it in my bedroom and then one day it disappeared. My parents didn’t seem to know what happened to it and I never found it. 

My Mom is a good sport. However, it took her a little while to recover from an incident in the kitchen where I walked in with a little green snake wrapped several times around my neck. She forgave me for that, but was not as generous when I made a little nest in the record player cabinet and hid the baby mice there. I had rescued them from outside in a field of tall grass where our dog had discovered them.

My husband, my best friend, my sweetheart, my lover - we eloped, we were just kids, and we had to "grow up," didn't we?  We didn't know anything!  I know this now -- I would not have wanted to take this wild and crazy ride with anyone but you.  You encouraged me to have confidence in myself and explore those things I was interested in. You still do that to this day.  As I said in a dedication many years ago on the occasion of my first solo exhibition, and again on our 40th anniversary when we renewed our vows, "You have encouraged me by example, supported me with love, and shared my hopes and dreams."  If I had to choose all over again - I choose you.

I am so fortunate in this life and I am grateful for the blessings of family and friends.

So, as the poem suggested “I shall wear purple.” As a matter of fact, I wear it often!  It is, after all, my favorite color. For me, it will represent all of the memories I have stored in my heart.  Moments when I have loved and been loved.  It is a good life.

Let’s all go out and have a good year!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Serendipity - or - What I found while taking the "Getting rid of 1000 Things Challenge"

It is  amazing what wonderful  little things may happen on the way to doing something else, isn't it?  I'm unofficially participating in the "Get Rid of 1000 Things" challenge and it is a little more  difficult than I thought it would be.   I'm looking  through my things plus I talked my husband into going through some of his things and handing them over  (yahoo)!  One of the interesting aspects, maybe the most interesting part of going through old stuff, new stuff, stuff you forgot about, stuff you don't remember . . . is  the little  discoveries you make along the way.
Let me back up a little so there will be some reference for the little treasure I found. . . 

My husband and I decided to  renew our vows on our 40th anniversary several years ago.  Since we had eloped originally (a quiet event with only a small group of friends and family), we decided to celebrate our years together by hosting a reception at the lovely Dorothy Oven Park here in Tallahassee.  We invited 75 guests and our dear friend, Patty Williams, presided over our  vows. Bella Bella catered for us, Scott Holstein took some lovely photographs, and  music was provided by the group Tantalas, a wonderful guitar quartet.  (They were scheduled to leave on a European tour the week after our reception). 

For our processional, as Chuck and I walked from the Main house down to the Gazebo where we would renew our vows, we asked them to play the Bach Air for G String.  That piece of music was important to us - The Charlotte (N.C.)  Symphony had performed it in a series of concerts during a significant part of our early relationship.  Chuck played with the Symphony and when he left for Texas to attend the University of North Texas Music  School,  I was brought in. .  . And no, I'm not a good player - just in the right place when they needed someone for the percussion section. ( As a matter of fact, I'm sure that the conductor liked me, but I'm also convinced that he wished I was in another conductor's symphony)! 

The day of our anniversary celebration was a lovely day - hot for sure, it was July after all, but after our vows were given, everyone came back to the Main House to celebrate.  The food was good, the music was  wonderful, and we really enjoyed the day.  Did I mention that my husband  surprised me by presenting me with a Nancy Reid Gunn wax encaustic painting?  I had admired her  and her work for many years and she had recently passed away.  When he unveiled it,  I was speechless, really.   Completely and utterly floored!  Our friends Sam and Barbara Fleeger, Mark Fletcher and his wife Sara Chang, and my brother, Monty Willis, helped Chuck pull off this great surprise. 

Okay, so  now you are probably wondering how this little saga relates to my "Get Rid of  1000 Things" challenge.  While going through boxes, cedar chests,  and drawers, I found an envelope that contained the vows that my husband had written.

I had already spoken my vows, and he smiled as he pulled his written words out of his pocket saying to the guests gathered around the gazebo. . . "She may not need notes, but  I do!"   Then he began speaking .  .  . and these are the vows he spoke that summer afternoon and the love that I know today.

  "Terrie, 40 years ago in a church in Lancaster, South Carolina,  before God, family and friends, we pledged our love  and commitment to each other.  I  remember that day as  if it were yesterday.  I remember walking in the pastor's  office just before we  walked down the aisle to become husband and wife.  What a vision you were.  You took my breath away.  You still take my breath away.

I loved you 40 years ago.  I love you even more today.  The difference is  that today, all the myths have been washed away and I can see more clearly into the depths of your beautiful soul.  I promise  to love you without reservation, comfort you in times of distress, encourage you to achieve all your goals, laugh with you and cry  with you, grow with you in mind and spirit, always be open and honest with you, and cherish you always until I have drawn my last breath.
We pledged to honor, comfort and keep each other.  We pledged to support each other in sickness and in health, in times of want and times of plenty, for better or worse, for  the rest of our lives.  We  have  had all  those things, and you have been by my side as we created a home and a life together.  Today, at the beginning of our 41st year in the presence of God, and our family and friends, I renew my vows to you, pledging my eternal  love for you, and eagerly await  what life may bring."

Today, I am remembering that day, and being reminded of how lucky I am . . .

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Hard to Believe it is already 2011!

Well, the sun has gone down on the 2nd day of 2011.  We had a nice Christmas and New Year holiday with family.  It was quiet and restful.  I started two new books and I've been working in the studio quite a bit. 

 I also decided to participate in the Get Rid of 1000 Things Challenge!  I started last week and I only have 975 more things to go!  On second thought, it probably sounds better if I say I have gotten rid of 25 things. 

This past year was interesting, fun, heart breaking, educational, and my exhibition schedule  was busy.  I had a piece selected  for the "Inaugural Exhibition of the Florida  Museum of Women in the Arts" in Deland, FL.  I participated in the "On the Wild Side" Exhibition in Dallas Texas at Kittrell/Riffkind Art Glass.   One of my pieces was selected for the national juried exhibition entitled "Pinnacle," at Foster Tanner Fine Arts Gallery where I received a third place award for my piece 'Carousel Music!' The honor was exciting, plus I received a monetary award!  I was invited to participate in  "One of a Kind" a celebration of the 20th anniversary of Kittrell/Riffkind  Art Glass in Dallas, Texas!  Congratulations to those fine folks.  I   had several pieces in the "Summer Annual" at the Florida State University Museum of Fine Arts. At the end of the year, our Artists' League was challenged to create art from the recyclable material at the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory.  That exhibition is on display for  several months. 

We enjoyed two trips to Florida's East coast and both were special. 

In December, we  lost our beautiful old boy, Shade.  He had turned 21 years old in August.  We miss him so much.  What a sweet, sweet spirit. 
He left behind his buddies  of many years,   Roundface - 18 years old and his best buddy,    Yam - 17 years old.  His newer buddies were Bump at 4  years and Purrble at 3 years.                

There are new projects on the horizon for 2011. I will participate in several group exhibitions and I am working toward the one woman show I will have at the Jefferson Arts Center at the end of March.

I have enjoyed learning something new this year - enamel glass on copper.  (Thank you Kathy Wilcox) and I hope to incorporate that process in some  of my own work (paintings in kiln-fired glass).  We'll see how that goes!  

Let's all go out and have a really good  year!

'Til later . . .