It’s time for change (artful summertime)


Sixteen years ago my little girl and first child left home for college. This is her as a mouse being carried away via daisy air travel.

What do you do when you feel blue?

I run to color to make me feel better! Color makes me happy!

While she experienced her first semester I began to paint.

I made the excuse our walk down to our garage needed a diversion to camouflage the bugs that gathered in the windows and smudges on the walls. But what I really did was comfort myself with color.

But today I said good-bye.

I took these pictures just before I painted gray primer over all the walls.

Change is good, right?



Miss it already…

Posted in art | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

ten little pennies

Do you have ten pennies?


Count them out.

Put them in one side of your pocket or wallet.

When you compliment someone put one penny in your other pocket.

When you compliment yourself put one penny in your other pocket.

When you compliment the day or mother earth put a penny in your other pocket.

When you say a blessing out loud put a penny in your other pocket.

When you change your clothes at night count your pennies in your other pocket.

Is there ten?

Ten little compliments a day.

Ten little pennies.

It can “change” things.

Do it again the next day and the next…

(Taken from my book in progress..”ten little pennies.”

Posted in Ideas - Kids, kindness, My Children's Books | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

The Book Nest

…He laid out mystical ballads, hard-edged old stories about chasms, fall, peril and betrayal at her feet.

girl with books

Soon Anna was surrounded by piles of books

as a woman in a shoe shop

might be surrounded by boxes.

Perdue wanted Anna to feel that she was in a nest.

He wanted her to sense the boundless possibilities offered by books.

They would always be enough.

They would never stop loving their readers.

They were fixes… in an otherwise unpredictable world.

In life.

In love.

After death.

page: 60

George, Nina. (2015).The Little Paris Bookshop. Farmington Hills, Michigan: Crown              Publishers.

Posted in Books and their magic | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Quiet Firework’s Show

Fourth of July fireworks is a beautiful celebration except for those who are afraid of loud noises with hearing sensitivity; which is most little kids.

Here is a cool and fun alternative for your little ones to be “in control” of their own tiny firework’s show. It is a win win project for adults too because the cleanup cleans for you.


  • White household vinegar

  • baking soda

  • cake pan or cookie sheet with sides

  • cupcake tin or bowls

  • Inexpensive grocery store food coloring (red and blue if you only want to stay with the Americana theme)

  • small spoon

  • Extra: paper towels, small bowl of clean water if you have a child with sensory issues.

  • counter and stool or chair for your child/children to stand on

  • a ready camera on video mode!


Bring your child to the counter and allow them to help you pour a thin layer of baking soda to cover the entire bottom of a cake pan. It looks like snow so have your child bring their cars to drive in it, or water resistant dolls or animals to play in the dry snow. While your child is doing that pour some vinegar into the cupcake tins or bowls. Have your child help you squirt food coloring in each receptacle of the cupcake tin or bowls. Have ready a bowl of clean water where you child can access it if they feel they need to stay clean and have paper towels ready if they desire to dry their hands.

Get your camera ready! Do NOT demonstrate. Allow them to discover the firework show themselves. Have them spoon some “vinegar paint” into the snow to make their own sizzling colorful fireworks. Allow the child to do it over their toys and play in it. I guarantee you will want to do it too!!!

I found that even if they pour one of their full bowls of vinegar paint in the pan with a huge sizzle, that it will continue to make little tiny sizzles for as long as the baking soda is activated while they continue to spoon another color.

It is great fun and a more gentle quiet way to celebrate the 4th of JULY for little ears.

It‘s a blast!

When done dump the entire thing down your kitchen drain and it will refresh and clean it. Rinse off the pans and spoons and wah-lah..done!

(Food coloring sometimes takes a bit of scrubbing off counters or even fingers, but it is not permanent!)

Have fun with it!


Posted in art, Have fun with Family, Ideas - Kids, Play Time | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Emergency Literary Pharmacy

Do books treat what ails you?

mysterious book

According to Jean Perdu they can and they do! This free anecdote for what our hearts need is found from the book-gem The Little Paris Bookshop  by Nina George.  

Jean’s fun prescription for his literary medicines are as follows:

“Fast-acting medicines for minds and hearts affected by minor or moderate emotional turmoil.

To be taken in easily digestible doses (between five and fifty pages) unless otherwise indicated and, if possible, with warm feet and/or with a cat on your lap.”

Enjoy a little book medicine this summer.

Visit your local bookstore, library, electronic device and/or used book seller and read for your health and wellness.

Here are three from Jean’s Literary Pharmacy list. The rest you will have to discover on your own or by reading The Little Paris Bookshop.

  1. Adams, Douglas. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy; A Trilogy in Five Parts

                    Effective in large doses for treating pathological optimism or a sense of                               humor failure. Ideal for saunagoers with exhibitionist tendencies.

                    Side effects: An aversion to owning things, and a potentially chronic            tendency to wear a robe all day.

2. Hesse, Hermann. “Stages,” a poem in The Glass Bead Game, trans. Richard and Clara Winston.

Cures grief, and inspires you to trust.

3. Melville, Herman. Moby Dick; or, The Whale.

For vegetarians.

Side effects: A fear of water.

(Please support local book shops everywhere!)


Posted in Books and their magic, Ideas - Kids | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Dad, I wish you knew how much we need you!

Egg + Sperm = new life

This equation is a biological law that does not change no matter the trend, orientation, tendency, or species.

New life requires part of a male and part of a female.

The deposit in this equation is the male’s “contribution.”  Then he’s done, usually revealed with a smile on his face…but that act makes you also responsible for new life, too.

I wish to express the importance of father’s in the lives of their children.

Of course  Mothers have huge psychological and emotional impact…

but so do fathers.

You are significant.

It is you they need to know with tenderness and kindness.

You are the other half.

It is you that influences in a way quite unique and special than mother.

Take the time to make those connections with your child.

You help create life and your actions affect how that precious life will feel love and feel whole.


There is really nothing like a wonderful, attentive father to help contribute in shaping a healthy child in this world.

You cannot be replaced in your child’s life.


Posted in Have fun with Family, My Thoughts | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

What is your dad’s love language?

Not every father feels comfortable wrapping those big dad-arms around their child to say “I love you.” Papa’s love can’t match mama’s loving, but they are entitled to their own ways of expressing appropriate affections for their children. They have their own “father love-language.”


What is your father’s? Not your love language you want to receive from him, but think what he does to try to show love to you?

Take one of my brothers as a father, for instance. He is one of the rare dads who grabs his kids in a big bear hug and shows his affection with gusto any time he is with them. His children also are affectionate people and not afraid to hug and touch with love.

One of my other brothers, as a father shows little emotion with his children in the form of hugging or touch. But his love language is spending quality time with them having them make something with him. He expresses his love when he sets up a potters wheel with clay and tools, sets up glass rods to make beads, fires up his kilns to blow glass, or has them participate in a project which encourages time spent just with him.

My father-in-law’s fatherly love language is not hugging and kissing at all. But he expresses his love by trying to be a helper. He wants to be useful to his children and teach them self reliance. He will make sure they know how their cars get gased, oiled and tires changed. His love language is nurturing but in a fatherly sort of way.

My husbands love language is definitely sports! Thank goodness all five of our children can play most sports because it is the way their dad expresses great big love. 


There are so many fond memories which include sports and our family playing with their dad. From clear back taking our first two children to the driving range and even cutting down a driver so the two year old could swing and hit the golf balls with ease. Their dad taught those same two babies how to “pickle” in the front yard of our first house. The mitts were nearly half the size of their bodies but they learned how to catch and run with their dad. He continued that sports play when three more babies came.

My husband not only can play most sports well, but he also LOVES to watch sports on television. Tennis is his favorite sport to play and watch. To share all those games every single season is similar to plastering all his babies with hugs and kisses; while rooting for their favorite teams snacking on salsa and chips.

My husband coached some of our children’s sports teams over a span of 32 years, and when not coaching rooted, perhaps a little too hard while watching. He’s probably had the most warnings of any father put on him from referees; even got kicked out of games on occasion.

Our family always has a ball, a made-up game for any occasion with a ball, or will make up some type of sport which will substitute as a ball. We play catch in airports, at church functions, in hotel swimming pools, even out car windows. In fact we would be rich if we were given $10 for every ball we counted in our house right this second.

Our children always have some type of competition going with their dad whether it is throwing rocks at a floating log in a lake, kicking field goals at the high school field, a ping-pong tournament, or seeing how far they can launch a water balloon. It’s their daddy that spreads out his arms as big and wide as he can with all that love a dad can muster in that dad-hug when he is doing, watching, talking about, attending, rooting, shopping at sports type stores, or competing in any type of sport with his kids. On this very night a ping-pong tournament is planned in the late night hours…

Pictures from Ipad 015

Look at your own father and discover what he does to express his love language. Sunday June 18th is father’s day. Let him show you how much he loves you by allowing him to give love his way; in his love language. And then let him.

Happy Father’s Day to our dad and yours.

(Punching, bullying, demeaning or sarcastic speech are not love language expressions. These things are hurtful and wrong and are not appropriate actions to any human being; especially a father. Mean is never love and never a substitute for it!)


Posted in Have fun with Family, Ideas - Kids | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment