Friday, December 28, 2012


I got a very unusual present for Christmas this year. I am the mother of two adult sons and grandmother to four grandchildren so I am well past the age of juvenile infectious diseases. I can remember having measles, German measles, chicken pox, whooping cough and numerous bouts with tonsillitis but I don't remember having the mumps. When I was growing up, we didn't have vaccines for any of these. It was just a rite of passage that you caught these miserable little diseases as a part of growing up.

I got up Christmas morning to make the fabulous dinner I had planned for my family. For about three days before Christmas I had a horrible headache that wouldn't go away and I felt tired and achy. I was trying to taste a sauce I was working on and when I put the spoon into my mouth the worst pain went up the left side of my face behind my ear and down my jaw. When I put my hand on my jaw it felt sore and tender. I went to the mirror and the left side of my face was swollen and 'deformed'. It was so tight it felt like it was going to bust. I couldn't even enjoy the Christmas dinner I had prepared.

I found out the next day that I had the mumps. You can only catch the mumps from another person when they cough or sneeze. I guess when I was in the crowds of shoppers doing my Christmas shopping, someone was out there sharing this very 'special' gift. I wouldn't wish this on anyone, so I'm staying away from people for another couple of days, the contagious period. Aspirin for the aches and a dry wash cloth warmed in the microwave is the remedy for the discomfort and swelling.

Beware of folks with swollen faces and please! stay away from coughing, sneezing people!!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Victoria Secret and Coconut Cream Pie

Every year before Christmas I take a deep breath, drive to one of the large malls in my area and I head for Victoria Secret for my annual shopping trip to buy the beautiful lotions, bubble baths and fragrances they carry for friends and the ladies in my family. 

I hate mall shopping and I avoid malls like the plague, especially at Christmas time.

I was in the store trying to focus on what I wanted to buy and I had to laugh at a conversation I overheard between the sales clerk and a man who was trying to buy something for his wife or girlfriend. The clerk showed him how to spray the sample fragrance on the little blotter sticks they provided so that he could decide on what he was looking for. The clerk asked him a number of questions about his lady's personality and what she liked. That didn't seem to help him decide. The clerk then tried spraying the sample fragrances on the blotter sticks and described each fragrance in detail. One she described as sporty and outdoorsy, the next she said was sexy and seductive, another she called sophisticated. The man still couldn't decide. The clerk sprayed another fragrance called 'Coconut Passion' on a blotter and waved it gently in front of the man's nose. 

She described it as tropical with a little hint of vanilla. She said it would make his lady smell like a coconut cream pie. He looked at her with disgust and said he didn't want his lady to smell like food, especially coconut cream pie because he hated coconut cream pie. I could see the frustration in the clerk's face and felt for her but I had to agree with the man I don't want to smell like food either. Anyway, it gave me something to laugh about on my dreaded trip to the mall. 

Cousin Ida Mae

I found a box of cards that someone gave me a few years ago. The series of cards was called 'Brown Sugar Babies'. 

The cards were a collection of vintage photographs of babies and children from about the late 1800's to the early 1900's all dressed in their Sunday best. 

The photos influenced some old fashioned doll designs that I wanted to do of little girls in lace dresses. 

I introduced Martha Sue a few months ago and I finally finished her cousin Ida Mae. She is all dressed in blue lace and satin ribbons.

She's wearing lace trimmed socks and matching blue shoes and She has her favorite stuffed animal toy with her to keep her company.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Angel Peace

This is my second Christmas angel, Peace. 

Even though she doesn't have a face, you can read her expression as she coaxes the scared little dove to fly.

She is dressed in a yellow gown with gold sequins and gold wings. 

She rescued the little dove after a fall and nursed it back to health until it was strong enough to fly again. 

The little bird is still a little frightened and needs Peace's encouragement.

Thursday, December 13, 2012


Last Saturday I got a chance to attend a pre-Kwanzaa celebration for the Black Social Workers of Sacramento. I have been working or going to school for the last few years and have been out of touch with community celebrations so attending this one was very joyful.  

There was a wonderful storyteller who made us all begin to think about ourselves in a different way. So many of our young people have gotten caught up in this fast paced, high tech world and so many of us, young and old alike have put so much importance on our superficial images and have neglected the person within, the person we really are. It's become so much about what other people think of us and not enough about what we think of ourselves.

The food was deliciously prepared by volunteers who made sure that everyone had a good meal. There were African dancers and praise dancers to lift everyone's spirits and a powerful drum group that got everyone else dancing.

 Usually Kwanzaa celebrations begin the day after Christmas but this Pre-Kwanzaa celebration seemed so appropriate because it put us all in a celebration mood and gave us all a sense of community and connection to each other.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012


This is Phoebe, one of my clients requested her as a birthday gift for her best friend. I was very honored to be asked to create this special one of a kind gift.

Phoebe is a wonderful friend. Not only is she a great gardener who grows beautiful roses she is also a skilled needle crafter.

She loves dogs and long walks...

and she is an avid facebook game player.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Crystal, A Christmas Angel

This year has been really crazy. So many ups and downs, good memories and sad ones as well have been made this year and now the year is almost over. I hate it when I go through the days, weeks and months at high speed because some how I miss out on my own life. Last year I vowed to myself that I wouldn't do that and as the old cliche says I would take more time "to stop and smell the roses." I started out the year at a sensible pace and like someone on roller skates going down hill I kept accelerating. I will try again this year.

I did very passionately make time for my dolls and my textile art. Someone earlier this year asked me how do I find the time to create and make art. I hadn't really thought about it until the moment she asked and my own answer surprised me. I told her that to an artist, we have to create or our lives are out of balance. Creating art is like food for us, we can't live without it or we wouldn't survive. 

I haven't been very good about posting my new work or writing about what has been going on with Cre8tiv Glory. I had to decide whether to spend the time creating things I'd like to write about or writing about the things I wanted to create. I chose to create instead of write. But now I feel the need to catch up on the writing and to give each of the 12 dolls I've created over the last few months her day to be debuted. I will start at the end first and present the first of my three Christmas angels.

I made two angels last year and I wanted to do the same this year. This is Crystal, she is my first Christmas angel for this year. I kept all of my angels very simple and chose to make them without faces. Three of my favorite artists paint and sculpt and create images without faces. I saw an interview with one of the artists, Cynthia St. James and she said that even though her images had no faces you can still see and feel the expressions and emotions and the viewer fills in the face from their own memories and experiences.

Crystal is a beautiful snow angel and she holds a strand of snow flakes. Only an angel's touch is so light that she can create a garland made of snow flakes.

She is wearing a midnight blue gown with silver sparkles just like the night time sky when it is filled with stars...

...and if you've heard the tinkle of a bell recently, it means that Crystal just got her wings.