Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Longest Day of the Year

Last week we ventured out to The Griffith Observatory to watch the sunset on the longest day of the year. It is one of my most favorite places in Los Angeles. I love this building. A few years ago we painted on location here. Flashback blog post here. On a clear day the view of the city is fantastic. You also have a great view of the Hollywood sign.

Inside is a free museum. All about space, stars, orbits, gravity, seasons. They have a Tesla Coil. And of coarse, the giant telescope.

This is a monument to James Dean. The movie Rebel Without a Cause was filmed here. I love the actors, but don't really like the film. I was named for Natalie Wood, after all. 

Waiting for the sunset. While the day had been nice and warm, temps had dropped and it was a little chilly. I definitely could have used a sweater.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Handmade Birthday

This is just a small portion of D.D.'s birthday (the actual day). We started celebrating last weekend and will continue through this weekend. Why limit yourself to just ONE day? 

I've been teaching myself embroidery. And I've been reading about Jane Austen, so when I came across her signature I decided to give stitching it a try. It was a little tricky, but satin stitching the cameo was fairly simple.

You're probably wondering WHAT this is. It is what D.D. asked for when I asked her what she wanted me to make her for her birthday. I'll explain. Since she was diagnosed with Graves Disease a few months ago she has had to start taking quite a few medications. She has been carting them around in a gallon ziplock bag. She asked me to make her a drawstring bag to keep all those pills and things in. It's quilted, lined and turned out better than I thought. She was delighted. It exceeded her expectations. 

I was feeling like I didn't have enough. You have to understand that growing up our mom always made a HUGE deal out of birthdays. She still does. So the night before D.D.'s birthday I decided to make a bunting banner. I used materials I had on hand. I would have done it a little different if I had thought about it sooner. But still, I like how it turned out.

And I LOVE so much how it looks on the living room wall I just might have to make an everyday banner to keep up year round! 

I had a few ideas about birthday cake. Last year I made a Boston Cream Pie that was kind of a disaster. But we're heading to San Diego this weekend and any cake would dry out before we could finish. And mom is baking her a cake. We have NO freezer to speak of so I couldn't make my specialty ice cream cake. Plus, I'm especially low on funds. Sooooo, cheap and tasty won out. Yep, rice krispy treats! Always a hit. 

P.S. the rice krispy treats are almost gone!

Good thing I know my sister so well and that she loved everything I did. Another successful handmade birthday.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Happy Birthday Desiree Dawn

This my gorgeous sister Desiree Dawn, or D.D. as I call her. She's a great sister, a great friend, a great roommate, a great business partner, and SUPER funny. She is very talented and creative. I LOVE her!

We did a photo shoot last weekend. This is her being silly.

I'll be posting the birthday gifts I made her later.


Sunday, June 3, 2012

Painting with Coffee part 2

Maybe you remember my post last Fall about painting with coffee? Well, I never got around to painting anything on my coffee prepared paper. And then I did and forgot to share.
This is the house where I grew up. (Not the best photo---taken with my iPhone---sorry). I was going to frame it for my dad for his birthday, but it just wasn't working. The coffee made the paper too dark and when I tried to lighten it with white (read frustratingly opaque) it just made the whole thing muddy. So I chose to not overwork it, leave it in an unfinished state, and sew it to the front of some card stock for Dad's birthday card. 

I still have a few more coffee treated papers that I will try to come up with better subjects to paint.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Cancer Update

The Wilde men at Grandpa Wilde's grave last weekend for Memorial Day.

I haven't done an update on Dad's cancer for a while because, quite frankly, there hasn't been anything good to report. Before Christmas his PET scan showed that his chemotherapy was working. We were ecstatic! But a few months later his next scan showed that it had stopped being effective. So his doctors tried a different chemo drug. We haven't known how well that was working until last week---although thankfully the side effects have been less severe.

Dad's latest scan showed that the cancer has grown bigger in some places. The good news is that it is still not in any new organs or in his bones. He will begin a NEW chemo treatment this week. He will receive an injection every 8 days for 3 weeks and then have a week off, as opposed to the injections he has been getting every 21 days. He will have another scan in 2 months time to determine if this is working. We can only keep hoping and praying for the best. At least his Shingles are clearing up. It just seems like he can't catch a break. Although he is out golfing today, so for today he is a happy man!