Laughing Dog Arts

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Now she beads

This is what I'm working on now. It is about 7 1/2" x 6". Stitched on a lovely piece of cotton velvet. I'm really enjoying working on this, the velvet is very firm and I need nothing else behind it for adding any firmness. Below is a close up. Does anyone recognize what the thing is I have in the center that I am beading around?
Listening to a new live Greg Brown concert I got in the mail. Anyone want a copy? I'll share it for free.  It's great.  There is a song on it, Broken Angel, that Jeff Bridges performs in his recent movie, Crazy Heart.  Evidently Jeff is a big fan of Greg's and based some of his character in the movie on Greg, or Greg's music.

Bead well.
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Monday, April 26, 2010

green food

Have you ever eaten nettles?  Some parts are edible you know.  Above is what nettles look like growing in the spring.  Don't pick them without gloves on.  They aren't called Stinging Nettles for nothing!  Below is what they look like after picking and washing.  These have a note on them because my BF came in and looked at them and I could tell by the look on his face that he was getting ready to put his hands in there and fluff them up.  Just a little reminder.  I cook them just like spinach, kinda steam them with some garlic and olive oil and then a bit of balsamic vinegar.  Very nutritious and free!

Above you can see our new crop of tomato and chard plants.  We have since planted them out, the chard is planted all over the yard because it is such a beautiful plant.  The tomatoes are in the little makeshift greenhouse.  I'll show you more of those later in the season.

Be well.
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Sunday, April 25, 2010

Heading to Mary's

Last week the creativity group I am in, Stitch 'n Bitch or S&B as we politely call ourselves, met at Mary's house which is across the Columbia River in Washington state.  The bridge is very long as the river is very wide at this point near where it meets the Pacific ocean.  I believe the bridge is 4 miles long.  The photo above shows heading towards the Washington side.  Gray pavement, gray water and gray sky with the misty mountains away off in the distance.  The sea gulls like to fly along the slip stream beside the bridge.  I will always think of them as "glorious birds" since watching Harold and Maude.
I always get a kick out of this sign announcing Dismal Nitch coming up on the right. 
Mary lives on the Long Beach peninsula, where they grow cranberries.  Have you ever seen a cranberry bog?  Above is a photo of one.  They are pretty, with the red plants against the spring greens.

Below is the return trip to the Oregon side.  That is Astoria showing on the hill.  It is a small town but has most everything anyone would need including a pretty good art supply store, Dots 'n Doodles.  Also has a JoAnn's and there are one or two other fabric stores.  What else would anyone need?

Be well. 
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Thursday, April 22, 2010

Flag book spine

Sorry my photos yesterday didn't show how the flags are attached. There is a piece of card stock that is accordion folded and attached to the front and back covers and the flags are glued to the folds.
I first learned of this project from a Diana Trout you tube video, you can see it here:
Then after mentioning it to my creativity group one of the members sent me this link she found: I mostly followed the instructions in that basic flag book tutorial except I didn't use her dimensions. It is very simple and I didn't have to buy anything. If any of you decide to make one, send me a link if you post on your blog about it.  Here is a link to my creativity groups blog, which shows further pictures of the process:  It is a fun project to do as a group.
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Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Flag book

This is one way to play.  Make a flag book.  I used a hard cover I took off an old Readers Digest condensed book.  Finally, a use for those books!  I covered it with fabric, then, using a stencil and paint sticks I put this bamboo design on it.
I have 20 flags/cards inside.  Each one measures  about 5 1/2 x 4 inches and is decorated on both sides.  It was fun just playing around, decorating the cards.  Rather like making ATC's.  As you can see, sometimes I didn't pay enough attention to the direction of each side of the cards and had to choose which side to be wrong side up.  If I make another one it will have more of a theme..  Or my friend April made hers with little clear sleeves that will hold ATC's.  Or you could put photos in it.  Lots of things could be done with it.  I'm done with this one for now.

Be well. 
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Monday, April 19, 2010

Hummingbirds and Humane award

 Thanks to Anne of I have been awarded this Humane Award.  I can think of no one more deserving to pass this on to than Bernie Berlin of and her art blog  for her heroic work in saving dogs and cats and running that shelter in Tennessee.  I don't know if she has time for art work any more and I'm sure she won't have time to respond to this award but if you have time, check out her blog and maybe even consider a donation to a good cause.  I do feel honored by Anne to have passed this award on to me, maybe because of all the critters I help keep alive by feeding them.  Thanks again, Anne.

On a different note, I frequently find the hummingbirds stuck in the back porch window and I have to rescue them. Sometimes they are in a bit of a shock, or, I like to say "in tharn", a term from the book Watership Down. In that book Tharn describes the freezing of an animal in headlights, too scared to move. Well, as you can see in the second photo, it doesn't last long for a hummer.

Be well.

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Saturday, April 17, 2010

Thanks Ces!!

I am honored to receive this Deborah award from Ces at  Ces is the one who created this award so I feel doubly honored to have her bestow it upon me even though we have only just met in this blogging community.   She writes of this award: "I have more trees to plant but rest assured those who have virtual trees and acorns planted and distributed in their honor have one common virtue, they are loyal friends regardless of race, creed, political affiliations and geography. Here, I honor womanhood and friendship and there is nothing more wondrous a blessing for anyone than for a friend who came and never left your side. You have enriched my life in such a short period of time. You inspire me and encourage me."  Thank you Ces!  I hope I can help inspire and encourage you and be your friend, as you do/are to me.  Hello Ces!

I received this award once before from Anne at   She has obviously already received this award before but I am going to award it to her yet again because she has been such a good support to me through the years.  Anne, you don't need to post about this on your blog, just accept it in the manner it is meant, as a thank you for your continued friendship, which means a great deal to me.

Another friend of mine who totally deserves this award is my best friend April.  She doesn't have a blog but I'm going to award it to her anyway because she has been a steadfast true friend for many years and I want to honor her with this.  April, thanks for always being there for me and always being supportive and for making me laugh!  She is such a good sport as this photo demonstrates.  She once confessed to our creativity group that she hates sock monkeys so now, of course, she gets sock monkeys, sock monkey greeting cards, sock monkey fabric, sock monkey this, sock monkey that.  She accepts these joke gifts with a smile and a thank you.  I hope she will accept this award with the same grace.

There are many more people I could give this to but I believe I shall award it to just one more.  I would like to send it to Audrey at  We have gotten to know each other a bit through our blogs, she was my very first follower.  Thanks Audrey (can I call you aud baud?) We are becoming friends and are inspiring each other to exercise more.  I know she is a very busy gal, so Audrey, you don't need to post on your blog about this but please accept the award in the spirit of friendship and encouragement. 

I read that the name Ces and her Dishes came about because Ces was a fan of Fiesta Ware dishes.  I know the other gals in our creativity group are also fans of Fiesta.  I hope you all find some wonderful new Fiesta ware at some unexpected place, and it is in perfect condition and way underpriced.

Be well.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Hummingbird Frenzy

Yesterday I captured this feeding frenzy of Rufous Hummingbirds.  I'm not sure what other breeds might be represented here.  If you know, please tell me.  There were so many, it was unbelievable!  I was afraid I would be stabbed when I walked across the deck.  This has never happened though, they are good at dodging humans.  They will land on my finger if I put it up to the feeder.  Sometimes they come into the porch room and go to the window to try and get out and will never turn around and go back out the door to escape.  They are dumb that way.  So I have to be vigilant and rescue them daily.  I have tried to take a picture of them in my hand as I open it but they either fly away so fast or they will be in shock and lie in my hand.  That picture looks like a dead bird in hand so I haven't posted that one.  I have several pictures of my open palm, birdless.  The birds sure are entertaining.

I wonder if this youtube will show here?

Be well.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

making Felt while the rain falls

Yesterday I did some wet felting. I don't exactly know what I am doing but it doesn't matter. I'm learning as I go. I intend to do stitching and beading over these pieces. I laid pieces of colored roving over a piece of half felted wool batting, then wet felted each piece.
I think they are promising. It will be interesting to see what develops with them. I know they will be a lot different once I get to fooling around with them.
In the meantime I am working on a different piece. I'll show that one later.

Listening to A Prairie Home Companion as I have nearly every Saturday for the past 30 years.

Where the women are strong, the men are good looking, and the dogs are above average.
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Thursday, April 8, 2010

Winner of my giveaway

I know I said my giveaway winner would be announced on Friday but I don't think there will be any new commentors between now and then so I went ahead and used the official picking the name out of the basket random winner generator and it is...................
AUDREY!!!! of
Congratulations Audrey! I already have your address so I will get these tidbits out to you tomorrow. Thanks everyone for wanting to win my giveaway. I truly appreciate you all stopping by and reading my posts and commenting. What a wonderful world this is in bloggsville! I have so enjoyed meeting you all, and welcoming new followers of which I see there is another. I'm sorry I haven't even checked you out yet, I will go do that right now. Thanks and welcome!

The photo is one with the Sun Spots 2 on the outside studio wall. That's me and my boys from the summer.
Be well.
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Sun Spots 2

Sun Spots II
This one I made two years ago. It had been in the gallery and now is folded up in a box in the studio. I enjoyed all the color and stitching on this one. It was fun to make. There is a Sun Spots I also, I'll show that another day. It was a smaller experimental precursor to this one.
Notice the skull fabrics in black and white.

Listening to Greg Brown today, his song "Cold Dark Wet" describes today perfectly.

Be well.
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Wednesday, April 7, 2010

For contrast

No, this is not me today. I just thought it would be a good contrast from the old photo of me yesterday. This is a current ad I saw in Better Homes and Gardens magazine. I must say I applaud Fruit of the Loom for being brave enough to show a woman who looks more like most of the women we see these days. Not that I see women walking around in their underwear all the time, but I'm just saying.

And thanks for all your kind comments on yesterdays photo, thanks for letting me brag a bit on my bygone days. Now, back to real life.

Be well.
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Tuesday, April 6, 2010

My former glory

Me in my better days, about 1989.  I looked and looked for a picture of my brother who was also a competitive body builder during the same period but I couldn't find one.  That was before everyone had digital cameras.  I thought you all would enjoy seeing a picture of him more than of me.
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Sunday, April 4, 2010

My First Giveaway!!

As a thank you to anyone who has ever stopped in and taken a look at my blog and especially to those who have bothered to leave a comment and even more especially to those kind souls who have become my followers, I would like to host my first giveaway.   I have been rather overwhelmed by all the friendly people I have met since starting my blog this year, and the kind, sympathetic or hilarious words that have been left in comments and emails.
Since I received lots of curious questions about the alcohol inks, I thought they would be a good thing to giveaway so someone can try them out themselves.  This is the Nature Walk pack with Wild Plum, Butterscotch and Stream the colors included.  I'm also giving a beaded bead I made in spring like colors.  It's about the size of a fifty cent piece.  Then I tossed in a few lacy bits for good measure.  Are there supposed to be rules?  I'm not much into rules but I guess I need something here.  How about anyone who leaves a comment on this post will be put into the drawing for this giveaway.  That's it. Leave a comment.  I will draw a name on April 9th.  And thanks again for all who have extended the hand of friendship through this blog. 

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Thursday, April 1, 2010


A big THANK YOU goes out to Marlene of for awarding me with this Sunshine Award.  I am truly honored that you would think of me for this award, Marlene.  I hope any of you who have not yet visited Marlene's blog will hop on over and take a look at her charming work.  She does very cute and sometimes amusing work.  I have one of her ATC's proudly displayed in my collection.

~Here are the Sunshine Award Guidelines~
1) Please thank the person who gave the award to you.
2) Copy the award and place it in your blog.
3) Link back to the person who nominated you.
4) Name 6 things that no one would really know, about yourself.
5) Nominate your Sunshine Award bloggers and post links to their blogs.
6) Leave a comment on each of those blogs letting them know you have nominated them for the Sunshine award.
But wait!  There's more!  I also received this Kreativ Blogger award from Nicole over at  Again I feel honored to receive these awards.  Nicole has been doing her fabulous bead work for many years and gets better all the time.  Plus she is having a birthday giveaway this month, and special free shipping in her online shops.  Check her out!!

These are the rules to be followed for this award:
1. Thank the person who gave this to you. 2. Copy the logo and place it in your blog. 3. Link the person who nominated you. 4. Name 7 things about yourself that no one would really know.

5. Nominate seven 'Kreativ Bloggers' 6. Post links to the seven blogs you nominate 7. Leave a comment on each of the blogs letting them know you nominated them.

It seems like people who's blogs I follow have already received these awards so I may be hard pressed to find someone who has not yet received it.

1.Robbie at
2.Tanya at
3.Mary at
4.Tam at
5.Susan at
6.Marilyn at
7.Emmy at
8.Judi at
9.Anne at

I could list another 9 deserving bloggers or 19 but really, everyone deserves one of these awards who blogs with any regularity.  I am going to leave it up to my nominees as to whether they want to follow all the rules, or just say "thanks for the award" and leave it at that.  And since I got two awards at once, and they are so similar, you can pick which ever award you want to display, they are both fun!  I believe the gist of these awards is just to share some love and the fun of learning about blogs you may not have visited before.  Am I right?

Next rule is that I am supposed to list some things about myself that you may not know about me.  I have been giving this some thought, so here goes:

1. I have lived in my same home for nearly 34 years, since I was 21 years young.  Just a kid, really.  I still love it here and intend to stay another 34 with any luck.

2 .I was a champion competitive body builder for about 10 years back in the 1980's.  Competed about 15 times and never placed lower than second place.  I never used any performance drugs!!  I was a total natural.

3. I love dogs.  I have always had a dog and at one time I had 8 dogs.  My favorite breed is the Bully breed, I love Pit Bulls.  Mine are nice, although I only have one at the moment.  I always say don't worry about those teeth, worry about them hurting you with those hard tails wagging against your leg!

4. I like to climb trees.

5. I have never owned a Barbie doll, never wanted one.

6. I chose to not have children.  I have pets and plants instead.

7.  Music is also a passion of mine.  I don't play any instruments any more but I love to listen to music, mainly acoustic folky singer songwriter music but I also enjoy some of the new young stuff I've been learning about lately such as BonIver, My Morning Jacket, Anais Mitchell, and some old stuff like Frank Sinatra, Louie Prima, and musicals such as the Music Man and Phantom of the Opera.

Seven things is enough.  Now you know some things about me you probably didn't know before. Thanks for  being interested enough to read this far.

Be well.