New Sketches – New Imaginings

Some company on the trail. And a new word.

Trypophobia – A fear of holes. I found this in researching why some lotus blooms leave such small pods. It seemed a bit dumb to have this word there in lotuses simply because they have holes. Sometimes you just have to wonder who is in charge of online reference materials. I like the word and my son pointed out that it has five syllables and could be used for the first line in haiku. But it is hard to bring a hole inside to draw for that book of drawings and haiku. I did go looking for holes to show you.

And this one that looks like he is singing.

And some other things in the woods.

A fairy door.

Peeking fairy.

Shocked fairy.

And remember the snaggle-toothed troll? Here he is in the Fairy Book trying to trap a fairy.

And some fun starts to pages in My Life in Clothes book.

Hiding in the bathroom from having to dance with boys.

Some of my mother’s smocking on my clothes and the most awfully tight shoes that I ever wore just to get my embarrassing father out of the shoe store. My mother asked him to go because she was busy and I think he just said, “Try these.” I just wanted out of the shoe store and said they were fine. When I went to draw them I was surprised how much detail I remembered.

And my Brownie Scout uniform. I didn’t last in Girl Scouts because their expectations were higher and my disagreeableness to those expectations increased. If they had just stayed with those Nature badges, I would have been fine….so no Girl Scout uniform.

And by the way, doing my own research by simply looking, lotus pod size is directly related to the thickness of the stem.

More later. I might be able to sew my new linens into pants today….if a caregiver comes…

Bye for now. Lee and I are going to do a take out lunch.




Another Start of Another Book – My Life in Clothes

I took the odd leftover pages from some of my contact printing that was mostly used for The Stoat Story and bound them together in five signatures using the coptic stitch. Next I put some of the dyed silk shirt that is over thirty years old and also was colored with some of those same grocery store Eucalyptus leaves and pod and tailor tacked them into place here and there on the pages.

Now I had something to draw into besides just the plain pages. I thought it would be fun to draw my life in clothes. It would be something else besides the Fairy Book to work on and something different from my Drawings a Day books. The fun part is trying to remember the first clothes you wore that left such an impression that you never forgot them…whether you liked them or not!

Here is the inside cover with the rhyme that my mother said several times to me.

There was a little girl

who had a little curl

right in the middle of her forehead.

When she was good she was very, very good.

And when she was bad, she was horrid.

I am about three here and wearing the dreaded Sun Bonnet Sue hat my mother made me wear whenever out in the sun. I remember picking strawberries and having to wear some cute little sundress as well. These drawings are from memory and not old photographs, that I really hate looking at.

Then things got better.

My father rigged up an old mailbox with a saddle, mounted deer head and mop to be my horse. I had a brand new cowgirl outfit that probably contributed to my love of fringe through the years. I so wanted to be a cowboy back then at about five years old. And very soon ditched the skirt for those paired jeans and shirts….plaid flannel-lined denim jeans to match the plaid flannel shirt.

On the left are my hat, caps, six shooter and holster. These years were heaven for me. The only horse I had after the mailbox was my imaginary horse, White Cloud.

Today while Lee is with his new caregiver, I had a chance to move on a few years to the dreadful cotillion dress that I had to wear to a dance that I wanted no part of. The drawing is of me standing on the toilet to stay hidden from the chaperones out looking for me. I stayed there until the dance was over. I will post that later with some equally dreadful shoes from childhood.


I am going to tack on a story here because there does not seem to be another place to put it.

When last in Australia, March of 2019, I joked with a friend in Hobart that I just needed to find a man to marry when Lee was no longer with me. Someone in Australia so I could just move there….preferably Tasmania.

We went off to Bruny Island for a fun day with another old friend, and stopped at a place for a flat white and muffin. I told the young fellow that I was willing to pay $1,000 just to get the ball rolling. He laughed and said he and I could start in Dubai. I lost interest.

But my friend reminded me that same sex marriages were legal now in Australia and she was single.

Well, we always were quite compatible…ever since we met in the late 90’s at basket workshops I was teaching down under. Her house was always open to me for staying over. She always picked me up at the airport, always got me off when it was time to leave. She always took me to the best shops, got me to where the workshops were being held, fed me well, had mutual friends over for good visits….she is simply the best.

So when she suggested that her and I could get married if it came to that, here is what she said. “I do love you, Sandy. And I’d marry you, but also I could really use the money.” We laughed at that. We laughed at so many things over the years. I can never think of her without just grinning and remembering some funny thing she said.

I remembered her in the middle of the night when I would wake up thinking how very special she is. So just short of six weeks ago, I sent her the check for $1,000 US funds. In AUD it would be almost worth an additional $400. I sent it in a lovely botanically illustrated card done by another friend’s mother, and just used an international stamp for postage.

I asked my two kids if they thought it was a dumb thing to do. I told them I wanted to use my own money from traveling and teaching down under. They both had met Jude on their own trips joining me in Australia over the years, and thought the idea was a good one and to go ahead and do it. The memory of her makes them smile too.

I thought it would be there in two weeks tops. She never messaged me about it. After a month I thought it had become lost and I might be out the money altogether. Mail was coming from Australia within four weeks, so I was a bit worried that I should have gotten her particulars on her bank account instead of being so impulsive. But I so wanted to imagine her face when she opened the envelope.

Well, the other day she received it! Just a bit over five weeks to get there. She says it is the best marriage proposal she ever got and is excitedly thinking of the things she needs that this will help with.  Jude gets the money, I get to smile a whole lot more and when we get married is anyone’s guess.

Here we are in a tavern on Bruny Island.

So the moral to the story is, “Just do it!” Especially if it wakes you up in the middle of the night and keeps you smiling. Just do it.

Til later.

This One Is Mostly About Lee And His Days

This is some of the switchbacks coming up to my studio. I need to get more mulch delivered to finish it off. We walk the trail every morning and search for something for me to draw in my Drawing a Day book. I photograph things along the way to feed into my Fairies Book.

Like this.

A snaggle-toothed elf wearing a pink hat emerging out from under a watchful eye.

Rain on crape myrtle trees bring out fairy faces.

Our dried leaves fall down with every squirrel jump made to shake the wet down on our heads. Some colored as to look like fall is here.

Twin fawns appeared in the yard.

Lee stops to replace the rocks knocked off his wall by deer and squirrels.

Usually I lead, but this morning he got ahead of me. I made a little movie of his feet walking in front of me but it did not like being here.

We return home and I draw in my book. The fourth image of a feather found this morning is the last page of that book. I have two more this size to go before I have to make more.


A wet turkey feather left

for us this morning.


A small and fluffy

taupe-colored tickling feather left

for us this morning.

A knot that came loose

from its branch on a felled tree –

more interesting.


Barely visible

a feather from the trail to

finish out this book.


And lastly I would like to thank all of you who send cards or little things for Lee. You are so thoughtful and it makes us smile. He has forgotten the friends we used to have, much like some of them no longer think of us. And to be honest I have finally let my disappointment in them fade away.

Today he came in from the yard carrying two pairs of work gloves.

“Why two pairs of gloves?”

“I want to take both pairs with me.”

“Where are you going?”


“Where is home?”


“No, you don’t want to go there. It is too cold and grey. That is why we left there twenty-seven years ago. We live here now.”

He looked so sad. So I said, “Let’s bring in the ferns from the deck, hang them up with a good shake, and you can vacuum again.”

“Yes, let’s do that.”

He loves the hum of the vacuum and leaf blower. My job is to make sure one is used inside and the other, out.

Now he is having a good nap and I get to do this….have a visit with all of you who tune in.

Til later.



Forest Influences

We are still here. All books finally mailed to Australia. Such an ordeal with deliveries being held up across the world and postal service under attack here in the US by its own government. It may take some time to get anything being sent via snail mail.

My studio is all cleaned up and a pattern for some pants all cut out. Maybe Monday I can get to the sewing machine. I had to order linen online as stores for apparel cloth are hard to come by. Quilting, yes, but clothing, no.

Here are the last four days of drawings and haiku.

A Japanese fern

propagated all over

the front of the house.


Today’s three feathers

tiny fluff of thrasher with

hawk and a titmouse.


Remember the large

leaf with juicy stem from

early July? Blooms!


A dried and curling

lotus leaf of gold and brown

moves with the currents.


And in the woods a wreath that a fairy left for us.

And this!

That inspired this!

He is just kicking up dust as he walks along with his bag of whatever his feet turn up. I still have not figured out what to put along the bottom of the pages, but I am working on it.

And new in the yard. Our first fawn of the season.

Sadie is like us, staying put.

The air conditioner man had to return today. The one with tattoos who has Trump stickers on his truck and works with a biker missionary. Lee and I hung out with him in the driveway as he added more parts where he could get to his tools. I told him that he was our days entertainment and we just needed to hear someone else’s voice. I asked lots of questions about tools and parts just to keep him chatting away.

A friend is now coming every Thursday to have lunch with us on the porch at safe distances with lots of fresh air. Another real live person who will stay longer than the repair man.

Not much else new.  I might try to find another artist to talk about.

Til later.