Welcome!

Welcome! ....As a Painter and Textile Artist....... I also make "stuff". I love the creative process... My design style spans from the charm and unpretentions of the Rustic, Folkart Primitives, the comfortable and pleasant Cottage/Traditionals, to the surprises in Found Object and the mystery of Improvisational Abstract. I am inspired by God and His creation... I design and paint, and sew and knit and carve wood, and enjoy needle handwork... My creative curiosity leads me from one to the next... I enjoy my garden, have a dog and a cat, love the outdoors, and I enjoy my family and friends! I currently live in the midwest of the United States...

Monday, June 30, 2014

Pickling...

     Hello!  My son and I have ventured into the intriguing world of pickling vegetables.  Here, we have cucumbers, carrots, onions, and jalapenos peppers.  We have to wait for them to cool and then they should be good in the fridge for a few weeks...if they last that long!  I learned to can from my mother, and in the past, the bulk of my canning was tomatoes.  It was so gratifying to go down to the basement and get tomatoes for whatever I was cooking.  I used them predominately in pasta sauces and as a base for beef stew. 
     I have some tomato plants in the garden that are beginning to produce, and I have plans to enjoy them when winter comes!

Monday, April 7, 2014

April Outing On the Missouri River

Paseo Bridge in Kansas City, Missouri over the Missouri River
Greetings to You!
It has been a long haul, but I'm just now feeling like my life is coming back to me...   At first, my strength was so low, so I took the time to just go easy with myself.  If I did something, sometimes it would take a day to recuperate.  So recently I went out to the Missouri river and collected some driftwood.  In the past, it would take a day or two to feel better, but now my strength stayed consistent and the next day, I did not feel any depletion of energy...this was a milestone for me.  In the meantime, I've been attending my Art Quilt group, and we had an exhibition locally for the month of March.  And, now another exhibition will be opening on April 18, 2014 at the Inter Urban Art House in Historic Downtown Overland Park for two months.  My work is a piece that I did before illness overtook me, named Paths and Patterns in Life...Rise and Fall. 
I'm so glad to be back!
I'm ready to be creating with the rest of you!
Val   

Saturday, August 24, 2013

It's taken the wind out of my sails.....

Life is interesting...  A week ago, I was diagnosed with Shingles...  This has changed everything for the present time for me.  The pain and discomfort have made me shudder...  Coupled with the RA, which has heightened, I have had cause to reevaluate my future move...  The depression that accompanies it, causes me to lose hope.  I have been stopped in my tracks...  I keep reminding myself that this is a temporary situation and there will be sunshine on the other side of it...  I just have to wait it out...  From the articles I've read, recovery is anywhere from 2 to 4 weeks, and I'm through the first week...  And I have to admit that with each day, there is an incrementally small decrease in the pain,..it surely isn't what it was a week ago, although it is a constant reminder.  I do find hope in this...
   I hope this finds you in a good place,...Keep Creating and I will join you in good time, hopefully...
Val  :-(

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Garage Sales in Preparation for Moving West...


Lady is truly at rest in the partial sun.  I wish I could take a nap like this....  I'm getting my house ready to sell so I can make my move west...  I've had 2 garage sales, 2 weeks apart (because I kept discovering new stuff to sell...).  And now I'm trying to recover...  I was diagnosed with RA early in my twenties and have been very happy to be in remission through  the years, because I learned to take care of myself.  But, with all the exertion and planning, I have had a set back.  I'd almost forgotten what it felt like to have this show up again...  The pain, swelling and stiffness are no picnic.  At first, I thought, "What is this???"...and then I remembered.  It had been a long time since I'd had a setback...  And so now I know that it will just take some time and rest.  I just have to take care of myself... 
 
And now she stirs in her sleep...perhaps dreaming of some other time... 
I hope all is well with you all, and take care.
Keep creating,
Val
 

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Recipes to Enjoy!!





Have you discovered the Mennonite Girls Can Cook site?  You can find it Here  It is a wonderful place to receive tried and tested recipes....every day a new one...  The photographs are so enticing, and their inventory of recipes is always fun to peruse...  I so enjoy cooking...I find it to be a big part of the creative life...  Spring has so many new opportunities, and the promise of summer vegetables to come...  What do you enjoy making in the kitchen?
Keep Creating,
Val  :-)

Sunday, March 24, 2013

March Snowfall...


Today?  More snow!



I hope this finds you warm and cozy!  Last night, as the snow was falling, it was so beautiful!  I always appreciate my house as I watch it from the window...  I am in the beginning preparations of a move...  There is so much to consider...  I have things from my past that belong in other people's families, and I surely do not want to sell anything that someone else would want.  So, I have been going through everything, a daunting task, and notifying people to give them the option to have those things, that they may want.  I am unsure of where I will land, so I am purging it all and taking only what is necessary...  This is an exciting time for me...  A long held dream...  I ran across a sign on Pinterist that read, "You better follow your dream, or you will end up working for someone else that is following theirs..."  This resonated with me, and I am stepping forward...  Keep a good thought for me...  I certainly welcome it!
Keep Creating,
Val

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Winter Wonderland....


     This is what I woke up to today....  What a beautiful snowfall!  It truly feels like winter when there is snow on the ground.  It is not terribly cold out, so it is rather refreshing to be out in it.  I grew up in South Dakota, where I can remember some snowfalls measured at 100"!  It was great fun to be a child... I would bundle up and be gone for hours, making snow forts, acutally snow fort villages, with all my friends...  Such nice memories...  It was our parents that had to deal with the logistics of navigating that much snow, but for us children, it was all fun!
     I have some organizing in my sewing studio to do, and I think this is the day to do it!  I hope you are cozy and comfortable wherever you are...
Keep Creating,
Val

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Beautiful Scarf Made of Decorative Yarns...

 

    The snow has come and still remains, although with a few warm days, it will be gone.... I've been busy making these scarves... I have been buying up skeins of yarns with all kinds of decorative properties for the last, oh, 10 years or so... Not quite knowing what they would find their way into, I bought them because they caught my eye, and I had the faith they would be used for something wonderful.  My thought is, when you find it, and it speaks to you, buy it, because you may go back to get it and it will be gone---I've had that happen before...
     So, a friend of mine gave me some royal blue organza type fabric and I cut a long strip of it, laid a water soluble stabilizer upon it, and stitched these individual strands of yarn the entire length, leaving a "hanging" tassel on each end. When I was satisfied with the amount of yarns that I had sewn down to the base layer, I soaked the entire piece in water to eliminate the stabilizer.  When dry, I sewed it right sides together the entire length, creating a tube with all the decorative yarns on the inside. I then turned it right side out, and there it was!
 
     This is a closeup of the decorative yarns that I used.  I know that I will be making more of these, and I will have to see what I can find for other colors of base fabrics...  The sky's the limit on possibilities!! 
     I hope you are enjoying your weekend!
Keep creating,
Val 

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Happy Valentine's Day!

Happy Valentine's Day to Everyone...  I have been busy and can't quite believe that we are halfway through February...  How fast the time goes by!  My wish for you all is to have a lovely day!  I have big changes coming in my life that I am very excited about.  A long held dream is in the process of coming to fruition!  As everything solidifies, I will post then...  Until then, please keep a good thought and prayer for me! 
Smiles to you all,
Val in Kansas

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Gratitude....

OK, so it has been far too long since I posted...  Lately, I am grateful....grateful for new days, fresh perspectives, inspiration downloads from above, happy to be reconnecting with old friends (you know who you are!!)...I am grateful....for the creative life...for the ability to dream...to step forward toward them...  That spring is coming, with summer following on her heels...  For the smell of dinner in the oven, and the prospects of leftovers that provide easy preparation for the next day...  For friends who are supportive,... and their support causes me to look for ways to be supportive of others...  I love gratitude...it all comes back to you to fill you up again!
--Next post I'll have some pictures...
Keep Creating,
Val

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Grieving for the Innocents...

Words cannot convey the sadness I have for the fathers, mothers, grandparents, brothers, sisters, aunts, uncles, relatives, friends and acquaintances that are grieving in Connecticut and Portland today...  All are in my prayers these sad days...

Friday, December 14, 2012

Abstract Beaded Brooch


I have been busy!   I just completed this Abstract Beaded Brooch.  I started with my hand painted fabric, and then embellished it with decorative stitching.  Then the beading begins!  This process is improvisational, so I never know what the final outcome will be...it is truly a creative adventure.  I backed it with felted blue wool. I then stitched a pin and label for the back.  I am so happy with the result!   It is really beautiful!
I hope you are having a wonderful Friday and that your weekend will be restful!
Keep Creating,
Val