Sunday, January 30, 2011

Black Swan - Disturbing

Black Swan


Can a movie like this get such high reviews? Have you seen Black Swan? I know that there are many views of what is ART. And many people see different things when they see the same movie, art, book… but, I went to this movie after hearing just bits & pieces of reviews, with people saying how wonderful this movie is. PLEASE! I want my $9 back & I wouldn’t sit through that movie again if you paid me $100. I went to see this with 3 friends/neighbors while our Hubby’s had “Guy’s Poker Night”. One was the neighbors 18 year old daughter… OH MY!!!!!!!!!

I was embarrassed to sit there & watch the sexual scenes. I mean really, it would have been more than I wanted details to see of a male/female intimate scene but, between 2 women… WAY MORE VISUAL THAN I EVER NEEDED!!!!!!!! And then let’s talk disturbing scenes like a bleeding cuticle on her finger that she starts pulling on until it’s a gushing bloody mess… Not enough, OK! A possessive wacko mother (who sleeps in the room to watch over the daughter) that takes scissors to a 20 something year old dancer to keep her from scratching & wacks the top of her finger off. Not bloody/gruesome enough? So the star dancer goes to visit a fellow troupe member in the hospital (who happens to have thrown herself in front of a car when she no longer is the star of the show) with gruesome wounds shown in that scene… so said stars stabs the wounded girl in the face with a metal nail file.

Are you wanting to spend $9 yet? WHEN did this become star worthy? Where is our culture going that we reward or hipe this sort of behavior? Making this something we give awards to???????? I’m confused. I think I better go get back on The Good Ship Lollipop. I like things to be pretty, romantic, happy, beautiful…. I know the world can’t always be beautiful but, I sure don’t want my $$$$$ going to see this sort of darkness. I don’t mean to offend anyone, and I love that we all have the right to have our own thoughts but, really… really… If you were thinking of going to see what the hype is about… think twice is this the sort of movie you like? I’d LOVE to hear your thoughts.

Have a Beautiful Day! Charlene

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Heart Strings


I am sooooooooo very excited because I just signed up for the class called Heart Strings by my precious friend Diane Cook. It will be in Central Texas this February & my friend JoAnn is going with me. I feel confident enough in my jewelry design that I feel like I could do this myself (I have taken a number of classes from Diane & she is an excellent teacher, covering so many of the basics) but, JoAnn has never done jewelry design or even expressed a desire to do so until now. When she asked if we could do this together I was pleased to say YES!!!!!!!!!!!!! HeartStringsBook Here’s the sweet little book that will be put on our necklace. I LOVE the extra touches that Diane incorporates into her work. After class… Diane is staying in Brenham with us at the B&B we have chosen & I know we will have a fabulous slumber party laughing the night away! A little peek at the room we have chosen.

victorian-sm3 I see RETAIL THERAPY at Left Over's Antiques in our plans on Sunday. Sweet Hubby again will have “bonding time” with little Elle while Momma takes a break to play with the girls!!!! GIRLS JUST WANNA HAVE FUN!!!!

Hugs! Charlene

Monday, January 24, 2011

Party Planning!


Magnolia Pearl wants YOU to be the best dressed Gal at Round Top!!!! Click on her name above to see her new Spring Line of clothing(thank you to Cindy Craine for the image above). There’s a BIG Party being planned in March!!!!! At Round Top Antique Fair!!!! Right smack in the middle of Texas(to see more about this go to my sidebar & the section that says LABELS – click on Round Top)!

The emails are flying fast & furious! There will be a BIG Group of us all playing together. The regular Texas gals that you always know gather & live it up… well, California & Arizona have decided to be heard from too! Here’s the list of party girls in our group:

Diane Cook(Texas), Riki Schumacher(California), Joy Campbell(California), Karen Decapite(California), Sandy Navarro(California), Susie Hebdon(California), Cindy Craine(Texas), Karen Valentine (Arizona) & Marianne/Barb from Arizona that Joy just told me about today (sorry I don’t know their blogs)! I hope you will visit each of these gals listed above because each one is AMAZING & we are going to have the time of our life!!!! ROUND TOP ROCKS!!!!!! Flights are booked, rooms are booked.

I am bringing my Junkin Cart! Joy is designing a liner & I am going to have her make me one! She plans to sell these little treasures so IF you need one be sure to contact her. Do you know what a Junkin Cart is? Here is a photo of one I ADORE!!!!!!!!


This beauty belongs to Shea & Debbie of A GILDED LIFE.

DSC02808 Everything they touch is magical! I love the Dupioni Silk fabric on the outside of this but, I’m thinking… Round Top = Cow Pastures + spring rain possible… hmmmmm maybe I need a little more practical fabric for my Junkin Cart. I know Joy will do an amazing job so stay tune for an update on that! Also, coming soon… I received my first box from the Gilded Life Stash Society (see my sidebar for a for that) & it is heavenly! Gilded Life Stash

I will be posting photos of the goodies inside that heavenly little box of Mail LOVE! IF you sign up to join they have a special blog for members only that has great ideas for the items included in each months stash. My friend Jan & I are planning to get together once a month to work on projects. I can’t wait to start & then there will be more things to share. Oh this year is off to a great start don’t you think?

HUGS! Charlene

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Quiet Evenings In Front Of The TV… NOT!!!!!!!!


Our “Winter Time Routine” for evenings is usually pretty boring & routine. Eat dinner in front of the TV & watch whatever is our favorites that night. Hubby naps on & off (because he gets up EARLY for work this time of year). Since we added sweet little Elle this is what it now looks like.

SOME OF THE TIME! And “SWEET” is a come & go sort of word for Ms Elle… Dads Shoe collage

After waking from your cat nap in Daddy’s lap you grab his shoe & start spinning it in circles as fast as you can!SONY DSC

And you give Mom THE EVIL EYE when she tells you NO!!! Talk about evil… that Pink Baby has an EVIL GRIN don’t you think? And then you give her the “what are you lookin at” look…SONY DSC

“I’m Being Good” SONY DSC

OK! I’ll just play with my ball.SONY DSC

She’s growing like a WEED! And yes, Auntie Diana she’s working on winning me over. Hope you are having a quiet evening spent the way YOU like to spend it.

HUGS! Charlene

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Lisa’s Bottle Class

Class Samples

Back in November I was lucky enough to be one of 6 gals to take a class at Cottage Panache with my buddy Lisa of Tattered & Tarnished. There were just 6 of us in this class & we had so much fun creating together. I had been eager to learn about using the wax on these bottle. Of course so many of you know that Lisa was published in Somerset for these little jewels (these in the photo were our class samples).Lisa Class supplies

Above you will find sweet Lisa the day of the class holding another of her creations. And the photo next to that is the class kit. She had a hand written card for each of us & had decorated that beautiful match box with a Madonna & Child.


Inside each kit was little snippets of wonder. And then she let us play in her “stash” of goodies to pick other things we wanted to use. Let’s look at a few of the bottles.Closeup of Charolette's Bottle A close up of my friend Charlotte's bottle is above. And then another sweet friend Jan made the lovely below. Jan is sooooooo funny & is the angel that fixed the most amazing 4 hour champagne holiday lunch for Cami & I. Oh how much fun is it to find someone who knows “HOW TO DO LUNCH”! She is a very talented gal & a little birdie told me she just might be working up a class to submit to Paper Cowgirls Art Retreat! IF ONLY SHE WOULD BLOG MORE!!!!! Don’t you love the vintage image she chose & the black millenary?Jans Bottle collage

Next is Linda’s bottle. So light in color compared to Jan’s. Again, the elements are wonderful & what really make the bottles shine! Lisa has an amazing treasure stash.Lindas Bottle collage

And Lori’s bottle. The crystal elements really made this one shine. Love the glass ring as well as the chandi crystal backed with sheet music.DSC02974

Below you can see that Tonda used an old watch & just wired it to the chandi crystal.

DSC02981 DSC02982

Love the paint chipping off the door knob here.DSC02983

And here is mine…My Bottle

An old porcelain door knob for the top. Wonderful printed image (an old document)on linen fabric drapes the bottle, vintage tulle, an old watch works, black velvet leaf with an OLD rhinestone button. The little silver tray with the resin bobble of the two sisters. The words… FOR THE LOVE OF SISTERS. I had plans for this little project.Linda, Char,Jan & Charolette's Bottles

Class Line Up (I would have more/better photos but, my camera battery chose this moment to die).Lori Tonda & Linda's Bottles

You can see Lisa’s post about the class HERE.

Sandy's Christmas Bottle

Above is the finished bottle with the photo provided by Sandy. Sandy had sooooooooooo wanted to come to this class but, since she had just been here from California the month before her boss was not seeing the humor in her need. Since I have no relationship with my only sibling & she has nosiblings… we adopted each other. What could be more appropriate as a Christmas gift for her? I added the little Frozen Charlotte doll & sent it off with LOVE! I hope you enjoyed the little peek into class. THANKS LISA!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Brrrrrrrrrrrrrr Baby It’s Cold Out There!

Falls 4

My last post showed you our trip to Farmers Market with beautiful blue skies & temps in the 70’s. Wellllllllllllllll that’s not the case this week. And all those beautiful flowers & flats of pansies I planted…. are all covered with beach towels & blankets thanks to an Arctic Blast that has descended on us for this whole week. In the theme of this I thought I would share some photos I found & thought very interesting. In 1911 (Yes!  100 years ago can you believe that?) it was so cold that Niagara Falls froze completely. Can you imagine? And of course they did not have the wonderful source of central heat like we do today.Frozen Falls 1911  1

Falls 3

Can you IMAGINE?????

Falls 2

I hope you have enjoyed these vintage images & little bit of history. And as for Elle & I… we’re staying in & using this time to organize the studio (yes, after the holidays it is a mess again for it was a “Dumping Ground” for “STUFF”) fix a big pot of soup & to rid our files of 2010 paperwork. Do you suppose I can get my sales tax return done & NOT pay the $50 late fee like I did the last 3 years????? Since it’s so cold & not conducive to running around….. MAYBE!

And Elle wants you to know that being such a short/tiny girl makes it really hard to run out to piddle when your belly drags in the frozen grass!!!!!! Brrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr Stay warm.

HUGS! Charlene

Thursday, January 6, 2011

A Trip to Farmers Market for FLOWERS!

DSC03425 The Christmas Tree & all THE STUFF is finally gone!!!! WHERE THE HECK ARE THE ELVES WHEN YOU NEED THEM? It took DAYS to make it all disappear!!!!!!!! The yard crew came yesterday to clean all the flower beds & spread fresh mulch so the yard looks so FRESH & pretty. I KNOW it’s winter & supposed to be cold but, we have been blessed with DIVINE weather (next week a brutal Canadian cold front is headed our way). THIS KIND OF WEATHER IS WHY WE LIVE IN TEXAS! Today was sixty four degrees with sunny skies & I needed a field trip to Farmers Market for flowers! We do get cold weather but, have many beautiful sunny winter days so we can plant pansies, cyclamens, & other cool tolerant plants as long as we protect them from extreme weather. I sooooooooooo LOVE the way the blue skies set off the backdrop of the very east side of downtown Dallas with all the flats of colorful flowers filling the forefront.DSC03420

YELLOW pansies so bright & HAPPY!DSC03424 DSC03423 Huge containers filled with many interesting colors & textures! The ornamental cabbages were amazing!DSC03426

Pansies are one of my FAVORITE FLOWERS!DSC03427

They simply make me SMILE!1-6-2011 Somebody else LOVES flowers too!!!!!Elle in the flowers Elle Elf went with “Daddy” & I!!!! She adores the flowers & has been known to nip them right off as she dashes by playing “crazy Havanese”.Elle on the cart Here she is sitting on the cart loaded with our purchases. The cyclamens are in 6” pots & the flats of pansies are typical flats so you can see the size this little twerp is. She is a bundle of energy!!!!!Elle on the cart #2 This shot shows a bit more of her markings. When it was all said & done…#2 013

We all needed a nap! Happy Friday!  And I decided to share this post on Show & Tell Friday since I am showing our new Christmas Puppy Elle Elf.   You can find our lovely hostess Cindy & the other girls playing Show & Tell Friday by clicking on the button below!   Thank you Cindy & have a great Friday everyone!

show and tell fridays

HUGS! Charlene & Elle

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Happy New Year 2011 & A Recap of 2010

New Year from Lisa I hope that each of you had a SAFE & Happy New Year’s Eve. We had friends in for dinner & learned to play a new card game called Pinochle. I remember as a child my beloved Grandmother had her Pinochle club once a month & it was a BIG DEAL! Dinner was served & the playing began. Ginger & Jerry taught us how to play & said we caught on quickly. It is a very detailed game with strategies to learn, meld to count, & learning to bid. We look forward to practicing & becoming good players. How did you RING IN THE NEW YEAR?Winter

I know winter has gotten a hard grip on much of the United States & Europe. I hope that you are each warm & safe. Many are probably trying to hibernate & stay warm. Or maybe you are like me & are lying around thinking about what you want to do in 2011…ATT000072

Last year my word for the year was KNOWLEDGE & I did sooooooooooooooo many fun things that involved learning. I went to many art events & classes. Starting in January I went to south Texas to attend the class called Resolutions of the Heart (go HERE & HERE to see)by my precious friend Diane Cook. Below is a photo of US & the necklace I created in that class.Resolutions of the heart collage Next it was February where I attended my first Gilded Life Event in Dallas, TX with Shea & Debbie. Here I met my amazing friends Sandy & Charlotte. I was blessed to attend 3 Gilded Life Events this past year. If you are interested in seeing the posts from these go to my sidebar & click on LABELS – A Gilded Life & you will go to all of the events to view what an amazingly wonderful time we have with these MAGICAL GALS!

001 Gilded Life Plaque Shea & Debbie by Jessi

March was Adorn Me in Houston, TX. (again you can go to LABELS to find the posts for this for more info) I was so excited to meet back up with many of my FRIENDS & MENTORS! Here’s OUR GROUP…


Left to right: Melissa Manley(an instructor at the event & my roommate), Deryn Mentock, Diane Cook, Diana Frey & Riki Shumacher. I have remained in touch with all these gals throughout the year & feel so BLESSED to call them friends. I am looking forward to sooooooooooooo much more fun with you all in 2011. My classes for this event were: #1 Crystal Princess with Diane Cook.Crystal Princess  collage Left her class sample, next Diane teaching & last my necklace created in class. I also started a second one that remains unfinished…. Hmmmm maybe that should be on 2011 list. #2 Deryn’s Class. Love her & the sample piece. My piece from this class is again… unfinished but, will be finished I PROMISE!Deryn Class collage

And the last class was with Diana Frey. Here is Diana teaching & my finished necklace.Twisted Sistha collage

April was Gilded Life again & a class with Kaari Meng of The French General. Kari Ming collage

And my piece made in Shea’s class now attached to the necklace I made in Diana’s class at Adorn Me.SONY DSC

Later in April was Petticoats & Parasols which was hosted by Jenn Hayslip in Savannah, GA. This was my first LARGE Art Event & I LOVED IT! The keynote speaker was none other than Jo Packham of Where Women Create Magazine. Go to LABELS & see all the fun we had there.Petticoat collage

May brought another class in south Texas with Diane Cook & this is my bracelet which was my finished piece from “Etched & Layered”. Finished piece collage

June brought Paper Cowgirls again in Texas & I got to hang with sooooooooo many of my Texas ART friends(too many to name but, oh girls what a blast to hang with those that I knew & hook up with some I had only met blogging & NOW it is so amazing to know you in person).

Cami & Charlene at Meet & Greet

A class with Mendy Mitriani on Photoshop Elements. Medny class collage

A class with Laverne Johnson… Again, look at the Lables & go to the posts for more.012 E Laverne's Class

July… Be still my heart it is time to go to California for Les Sirenes which was my first event hosted by the infamous Kim Caldwell.Group  Photo Kim The teachers(go to Labels/posts to get links to each), Kim & Keynote speaker Jenny Doh.Teachers Kim & Jenny by Kim

And my amazing tablemates… TABLE TWO ROCKS!DSC02293

Then there was a big break in the Art Event/Classes for a few months when Hubby had open heart surgery & I am so very THANKFUL that all went well there & he is on the mend & BACK AT WORK!!!!!!!!!

DSC02401 My Finished Project

September (above) brought a class taught by my amazing friend Lisa & sweet Charlotte (that I mentioned from February Gilded Life)attended that too. What a great time we had in our little group. The photo on the right is my finished project from that class.

October brought my precious Sandy to Texas for a weeks visit as well as the last event of the year for Gilded Life. SONY DSC And we got to meet sweet Cindy.

DSC02786 And make these royal treasures.

Picnik collage Crowndalier

Picnik collage Day One Crown Details

Then there was the controversial “Bottle Class” which I haven’t shared yet (but, will show you soon). & last but not least… a class in San Antonio with Diane Cook where the internationally known teacher Mary Hetts taught us metal working. You will see Mary & I below as well my finished piece (Two Peas) from the class.Mary & Pea collage

I shared so many of them with you in this years posts & I wanted to thank you for going along on this journey with me. I am thinking about what I want my word of the year to be this year. I am thinking it should be EXPLORE! What do you think? Do you have a word for the year or a resolution? Share it with me if you do. Take a little time & choose one (or more than one if you want). Now I’m off to grill steaks with my son’s family & top dinner off with a chocolate cake I made earlier today. I think the diet has to wait another day!!!!! HAPPY NEW YEAR MY PRECIOUS FRIENDS!

HUGS! Charlene

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