My friend Judithe

I can’t believe I forgot to post about this.  My friend Judithe was one of the East LA Latino muralists in the 70s.  She’s a very, very talented artist and I am just always blown away by her work.  She did an instillation at the Mexican Museum of Art in Chicago a few years ago that was for Los Dias de la Muerta.  If you ever see it, one of the masks is ME.  🙂  She had another opening there last Friday.  Quite a few of us went to it.  Dick and Edith came with us.  Mitchell, Ari and her boyfriend came.  Michael and MaryPat were there with a friend of theirs, and of course, Judithe, Mort and Ariel were there too.  Her work is magnificant.  If you want to see it this should do.  She is the picture for the Chupacbras.  I love her work.

Plus she’s the only person I know who had Los Lobos play at her wedding reception!  It was their gift to them.  Nice, huh?


Fat cats

I put a box outside for Fuzz to sleep in.  It’s lined nicely with polar fleece and I guess if you’re a stray it’s pretty nice to sleep in.  I always cut the holes a little on the small side to keep it as warm as possible.  Looked out the door today and Freckles was oozing out.  He’s such a lard butt!  It looked like this poor box was giving birth.  He does NOT appreciate being laughed at either.

I got my jewelry order ready to go to California tomorrow.  I was hoping for a lot more business from the gallery this winter but so far it hasn’t happened.  I just don’t know how to promote myself.  Didn’t have to do that as a nurse, I guess.  I did put my first auction up on ebay yesterday though.  It’s got one ‘watcher’.  Not much but better than nothing.  All this stuff is fun but between the eBay or etsy fees and then the Paypal fees, I feel like I’m working for them, not for me.  I guess I shouldn’t whine.  I have my first sale on etsy too.  She hasn’t bought it yet exactly but is going to.  YAY!!!

Now I have to try to get some teaching gigs in Chicago.  I need to quit waiting for people to come knocking on my door and start doing it myself.  Wish me luck.  I think I’ll need it.

Still brrrrrr!

Damn it’s still cold here today!  I’m trying to be green and not turn up the heat but I’m freezing.  Nutmeg keeps stomping in and giving me these looks.  She likes to sleep on the vent at the bottom of the back stairs and I think she wants me to go and turn up the heat for her.  Don got me a really nice space heater for my studio so when it’s on I’m nice and toasty.  Unfortunately, I don’t have it on so I’m starting to turn blue.

I was eating lunch today and saw this huge pigeon land in a neighbor’s tree.  Only it was a HAWK!!!  We’ve lived here for 17 years and I’ve seen a total of 3 hawks.  It’s just not something we have a lot of on the north side of Chicago.  We have a big bush in the back yard that’s always full of twittering birdies and it was verrrrrry quiet for a while.  Smart birdies.

Fuzz and Mookie were vying(?) for the bowl.  There’s what started as a little pyramid for the cats to sleep in out there.  Fuzz didn’t like being inside it so would always push the top down into the bottom.  It looks like a big cat bowl.  I’ve got polar fleece in it and I can wrap whoever’s in it up like a big burrito.  Fuzz was in it waiting for breakfast and Mookie was on the ‘step’ for it waiting for Fuzz to move.  Mookie can’t do the jump into it anymore so we put the little charcoal storage containers like steps up to it.  Spoiled strays?  Nah…This is Fuzz from last year.  He’s such a cutie pie!  I wish we would’ve found him as a baby because he’d be in with us for sure.  He hates even coming inside to warm his paws now.


Isn’t he a cutie!?  Wish him luck to make it through the winter, OK?


Isn’t it nice to have them?  They all fulfill a different niche in our lives and a few just really make us whole.  I don’t know what brought this to mind but I’m just really treasuring the people in my life right now.

  I guess a lot of it is because of the death of my friend Marilyn.  I miss her so much.  We were like sisters in so many ways and those last few months we just got closer than ever.  Going through her craft things is something I’m loving and not liking all at the same time.  I hate the reason that I have to go through the things.  I love finding things and remembering where we were when she bought it.  I love finding things that she bought before we ever knew each other but that are things I’ve heard the stories about.  I know Judithe feels the same way too. 

In some ways it doesn’t seem like she’s even gone.  I don’t think it’s because I’m denying it to myself so I’m not sure why I feel the way I do.  Maybe it’s because I feel like she’s part of me and will always be with me.  I’ve never felt that way before about any friend or family member who died.  Her spirit seems to have spread over all those of us who loved her.

 Marilyn, my friend, I will miss you until we are friends again in another life.  We’ve been friends so many times before and we will be friends many times again.  Maybe that’s why I feel the way I do?  Because I know it isn’t the end…


My friend Judithe and I went to Marilyn’s yesterday and started to go through all her craft things.  We did all the jewelry making things yesterday.  It seemed very weird at first, to be going through all of her stuff without her there.  Even weirder was dividing it up between us.  I loved finding things and remembering when she bought them.  I found quite a few things that she bought at Bead and Button over the years.  I found all the things that we got when we did our PMC Certification a few years ago too.  It was so nice having those memories.  I know that some of the things, I’ll use but some of them will just be for memories.

I took some of her doll making things as well.  I’ve never made an art doll but I’d like to make one in honor of our friendship.  Some of the things that she had for it just screams Marilyn to me.  I have an idea already of what I want to do and now I just have to figure out HOW to do it.  I know she’ll be there to guide my hand when I start.  I want it to be as beautiful, funky and creative as she was.


One of my favorite things to do is work with hot glass to make beads.  I don’t have a torch set up at home…won’t even go there…so I don’t get to torch as often as I would like to.  Tomorrow is torchin’ time! 

A great friend of mine, Mari Johnson of Blue Fire Beads in New Lenox, IL has a hot glass studio set up and is wonderful enough to have Open Torch on the first Friday of the month.  I usually go early so I can have lunch and a nice long afternoon of torching with Mari.  We talk about everything in the world while we torch.  There is just something so amazingly relaxing, invigorating, wonderful about melting glass in a 1600 degree fire.  I never thought I was a pyro but I think I am.

We have a great group that comes too.  Patty, Jo, Jennifer, Kathy, and I are always there.  Jennifer is pretty much coming all the time now and she’s a great addition to the gang!  Jason and Heather show up when they can but they have to come even farther than I do so they don’t always make it.  Jeff and Lorraine are sporadic as well.  I miss seeing them when they aren’t there for a while.  Sweet Lana hasn’t been for a while and we look forward to her coming back so we can give her all the hugs that she needs.  Diane and Ellen almost never come but we love it when they do.  I’m sure I’m forgetting someone and I apologize!  We torch and then we go eat.

Mari’s birthday was on the 30th so I think we’re going to have a little party for her.  Any excuse for cake, you know. 

I’ll show you pics of the beads that I make.  I am going to try to do little sets for earrings.  I’m not always good at doing more than one of something so wish me luck.

Happy New Year!

We had a quiet night last night.  I do NOT like going out on New Year’s Eve in general and this year just didn’t seem like a celebration.  We cooked, drank a little champagne and watched FoodTV.  Life in the fast lane…that’s us.  LOL  I made a Belgium Beef Stew which seemed so perfect as it was cold and snowy outside.  Nothing like a warm hearty dinner, right? 

Chicago is gorgeous today.  I tried to take a few pictures but it’s so bright and white out there and I’m so bad with a camera that they just didn’t turn out very well.  I love looking at our yard and seeing all the little foot prints our there.  I’ve seen rabbit, squirrel, possum, cat and bird so far today.  That’s pretty much all of them unless the raccoons show up.  They seem to keep a low profile during much of the winter though.  Smart critters.

I think there is one critter who had a little too much ‘nip of the cat’ though.  What do you think?

Poor Freckles

Here’s wishing you all a healthy and happy 2008!