Thursday, December 31, 2009


This is a view of my huge white dresser...I admit, I have a problem. I love boxes. All kinds. Super shabby cigar boxes, old rusty tins, tattered velvet boxes, old cardboard boxes, and especially my collection (the one overtaking my dresser) of cream colored vintage jewelry boxes...the ones with the gold flourishes and borders that have been loved off over the years...I keep my jewelry creations in them, like stacks of little shabby white hope chests, with the contents waiting to be discovered by a kindred spirit.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

My Constant Furry Companion

Seems like she's there 24 hours a day. If she's not sleeping, she's awake and gazing at me while I type or while I work at my table. On occasion she gets down from her old box perch (that I don't have the heart to move) and rubs her nose on my arm or lays on my right forearm while I try to type...I've gotten used to typing with her weight on my right forearm......
My dear Molly cat.

The Return of Spring

From a vintage double linked chain of gingerbread brass, hangs a very old buckle turned aviary...a refuge under the branches for a little bygone copper wren. Layers of olden leaves and branches provide a canopy for this little traveler, and an antiquated etched floral heart reminds us to keep nature our hearts, when each day blurs into the next. Spring will return again. Ever present, as long as we keep it alive within ourselves.

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Dear Baby Lamoreux

When your mama asked me to make a special necklace for you, I didn't know what to say. I was so honored...and I thought of you the whole time I worked on it. Your mama wanted something that would make a little noise that you could hear when she moved...I looked for just the right thing, and settled on a little key. Not just any key, but the key to a mysterious jewelry box, long forgotten...I thought it fitting because you are such a jewel. Sounds corny, I know....
Then I thought of the locket and how your momma talks of her grandmother's flowers and how much she misses her...and how I can relate because, though I am still blessed with my grandmother in my life, my love for her is so great that my heart went out to your mother and her deep loss and grief. I know your mama will think of your tiny hand in your grandmother's, and how she wishes she could see you...and I will tell your mama that she can see you...that she will find her grandmother in your little eyes and in your first little smile. And she will hear her grandmother in her own voice as she speaks to you in whispers in the hours before dawn.
Baby Lamoreux, you don't know this quite yet, but you have amazing parents. I don't know much about your father, but I know he has such a kind and gentle face....and the way he looks at your mama when she takes his picture says so much about how he feels for her....
and your mama, she is so spiritual....and so beautiful inside, that she radiates joy and peace to everyone she touches.....and she touched me.
I read her story, as she told it, when life was very lonely and difficult for me. Your mama has no idea the impact she had on my life, not to mention the lives of so many others. She is so very special, and you are so blessed to be inside of her right she breathes in and breathes out and smiles at the thought of you there in her belly, so tiny.
Yes, all this and more as I made a simple necklace...but I made it with such hopes that you will feel it as you grow...and I hope your mama can feel it too.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

A Locket for my Dear One

...with a secret note inside.....I made this locket for my husband for Christmas. A leaf for each year we've been married and a heart for the current year.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

I adore this print by my sister, Kelly Rae. I love seeing the bits and parts and pieces of things that I've sent her in her creations...

Seasons of light...

I feel more fully in the moment these days...growing more and more into myself, even at 40, there is still so much growing to do.
The holiday season is such a joy for me this year...actually my whole life has become more joyful. I finally feel like I've found my true self (other than my children and husband). Everything seems to have more meaning because I choose to look closer, breathe deeper and know. There are still the little voices that tell me what I'm doing isn't important...that making assemblage art and artistic assemblage jewelry is not really art and that someday I am going to be found out for who I am, someone pretending to be me. Does that make sense? All I know is this, I feel spirit moving through me when I create...and I've always read that you have found your passion when you forget to eat, when you loose yourself in time, when sleep becomes a cumbersome task....
I stay awake at my table until my eyes won't stay open anymore, and I have to think about when my last thing to eat was.....this is new and wonderful and scary all at once.
Lately I've been smitten with lockets and gatherings of sparkles and leaves and tiny things............
The locket that says "Fly" was inspired by my incredible sister, Kelly Rae Roberts, to whom I am so grateful for her encouragement and support. I am certain most who will read this blog know of her. I am in awe of her work and her dynamic spirit. When I grow up, I want to be just like her.
See her amazing work at

Thursday, December 10, 2009

I've be so pleased with the assemblage jewelry and artwork that I've been creating lately. I feel like I am finding my own voice in old oil cans and vintage filigree and antique findings...vintage crystal beads and sterling wire. It is so hard not to be consumed by this, my new found passion...the thing that makes me forget to eat and not want to ever sleep........

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Celebrating Your Birthday

...each year, I do it. I light the candle and make a place for outward symbol that your memory is still so alive inside of me. and your humor and gentleness, coloring the way I am with my own children through the years. I look at them and know in the depths of my heart that you would have found such joy just being in their presence. and they would have found such joy in you. I know this, and I am grateful. It is now youngest Jeremy's turn to know you, as I did. To hear the stories of you I hold so tenderly and hold on to so fiercely because I want you to always be present...I want you to live on in the minds of my children even after I have gone on to join you. Yes, they know you, my father, my Jerry. Thank you for your gifts. This is my gift to you on your birthday each year. I tell them the story, of you.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Trinity Earrings

I have been having this love affair with making earrings lately, and I want to keep each pair I create, but I am hoping there are kindred spirits out there who connect with what I make and fall in love as much as I do with each unique pair. These are created with antique glass buttons and antique clothing hooks. I love the aged and rustic nature of them...

Queen Anne's Lace

This has to be my most favorite flower...and it is growing with wild abandon around the house this year...such intricate beauty in the simplest of things. Tiny bees and flowers reminiscent of lace....

Thursday, May 21, 2009

When it's over, I want to say all my life
I was a bride married to amazement.
I was the bridegroom, taking the world into my arms.

When it's over, I don't want to wonder
if I have made of my life something particular, and real.

I don't want to find myself sighing and frightened,
or full of argument.

I don't want to end up simply having visited this world.

an excerpt from When Death Comes by Mary Oliver

I simply can't remember

...the last time I lay under a tree and listened to the rustling of its green green hands in the spring breeze. So today, I made a memory and I lay in the grass and I took this photo to help me to remember to connect with the earth and to connect with myself more often.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Phi Theta Kappa

I love the way the dappled sunlight falls through
the lace curtains...
I received my certificate for my membership into the International Honor Society today. Not too shabby for a highschool drop out...
Last night I lay under the stars
and in the quiet
I felt the breeze,
like the soft breath of God
wafting over my body and into my ears
assuring me
that everything unfolds
according to his plan.
I am enough.
Then he asked me,
who would you be
without the burden of your story?
and after I thought
I said,
So I gave my past to God
and he cupped it in his hands
and flung it to the universe
to dissipate into
that turned into
bright burning stars.
Beautiful formations
of light
that made me who I’ve become.
And I am enough.
I am.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Ray, a collaborative work

This is "Ray", a collaborative piece between my talented husband and myself. We won Honorable Mention at the Buchanan Trash to Treasure art show last month.
This piece is a collaborative work between my husband Ken, who is a talented portrait painter, and I. The assemblage and portrait revolve around a story that we created about Ray, an African American man in Chicago who marched with Martin Luther King. He lived in an old apartment building there and his nieghbor was Miss Jones,whom he had secret affections for. Each Wednesday,he'd go over to Miss Jones' apartment to take out her garbage for her...she always invited him in for some homemade pie and lively conversation. He repaired radios and televisions on the side and prided himself in his work and civil rights activism.

You can see more of his beautiful portraits HERE.

Saturday, May 09, 2009

Apple Blossoms

Today we passed an apple orchard in which the trees were being trimmed row by row by row. It was so sad to see all of the drooping branches in heaps on the ground. We filled the back of the van with the sweetly scented wilted flowers and put them in a sink of cool water when we arrived home. Fortunately the sink is a beautiful vintage deep sided sink, just perfect for such a thing as flowering branches.
As of this post, I have filled every available white pitcher and white vase and old bottle with blushing apple blossom branches and placed them in each room downstairs. When the sun comes out tomorrow, I'll take more photographs. Now, it is time to surrender to sleep and the scent of the blossoms filling the bedroom with the hope of spring.

Friday, May 08, 2009

Mother's Day

....I still wear scarves....always have, even when they are out of style, just because they remind me of you. Did you know that?

My fondest memory? Strange, I know, out of 40 years worth of remembering... my favorite is looking into the rear view mirror from the back seat of our old white car to see your forehead and the fashionable little white streak in the bangs of your perfectly curled shoulder length brown hair. How I loved the colorful scarves you wore and the way you smelled and the color of your fingernails and drinking the last bit of your tea. My God how I adore you still. How I revel in your attention and delight in your eyes... Your boisterous laughter, your sense of style, your intrinsic beauty, boundless creativity and unending generosity are only a few of the things that make me so proud to say you are my own. My mother. In loving you, I have learned to love myself...does that make sense?

What you have given me is such a gift. You gave me this life. How can I ever repay you for the countless glorious sunsets, blushing apple blossoms, the miraculous sound of my children's laughter, books of poetry, rain on my face and chocolate cake? Life has held such indescribable beauty for me and such immeasurable joy and I thank you, I thank you for bringing me here.

Happy Mother's Day Mom, you deserve every happiness and every birdsong and every spring flower and every joy.

I love you.

Saturday, March 07, 2009

Semiprecious Salvage Praise

I've been living in Stephanie Lee's book, "Semiprecious Salvage" for a couple of weeks now...staying up into the wee hours soldering and hammering and smiling to myself. Stephanie has been so very gracious answering my questions and even bestowing praise when, in my delirious excitement, I sent her a photograph of my first completed project from her book.
There is something magical and satisfying about creating something you thought you never could...and I have been truly enjoying the process of learning, not to mention the packages that come in the mail bearing gifts of exquisite silk ribbon, beads and wire and even tiny gold colored leaves that I can't wait to play with. All of the beautiful junk in my studio seems to sigh a heavy sigh when I walk by, knowing that my new passion will be taking up much more of my time.
Stephanie creates the most glorious jewelry that speaks to my soul, and for her to share her experiences and techniques in such a beautiful book is such a gift. I feel her magical presence in everything I've been creating.
You can find her truly lovely self here. Prepare to be delighted in what you find there...

Sunday, January 11, 2009

My Furry Muse, Oliver

Oliver always hangs out at my "creating space" which happens to be the counter that separates the living room from the kitchen. I think I do my best work when he is laying all over my junk and I have to move a paw or a tail to find something.