Friday, December 31, 2010

A New Year Wish

As we prepare to ring in the New Year, I have a New Year Wish for you.

With all my
heart this
glad New
I wish you
Plenty, Health
and Cheer

Happy New Year

A big thank you to Beth for hosting Postcard Friendship Friday.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Red Tea Pot

New little red teapot from TJ Maxx

"Drink your tea slowly and reverently, as if it is the axis on which the world earth revolves - slowly, evenly, without rushing toward the future." ~Thich Nhat Hanh

Thank you!!!

Monday, December 27, 2010

My Favorite Christmas Gift

From Mr. Dragon

He is my knight in shining armor.
Thank you, my love. 

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas!
Thank you so much for being part of the neighborhood here at Twisty Lane.
It's been a joy to get to know you.
I call you friend.

May you experience peaceful places,
 tranquil moments,
 quiet thoughts that nourish the soul.

Friday, December 24, 2010


On a recent shopping trip, a dear friend and moi stopped by Anthropologie.
There, calling my name, was a collection of postcards.
Glitter Greetings, Joyeux Noel
Cavallini & Co.

Here is one of the postcards from the assortment of twelve.

I think you can see the glitter on the birds.

And, they were on sale!

The lovely Beth is the hostess for Postcard Friendship Friday.
Thank you, Beth!

Wishing all of you well, the happiest of holidays and a bright and glorious New Year!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Winter Solstice

Yule, the winter solstice, is a time of great symbolism and power. 
It marks the return of the sun, when the days begin to get a little longer.

When Mr. Dragon and I first married, on the winter solstice we made a big pot of posole, invited friends over, decorated the tree, and shared a special ornament -- usually in the shape of an animal.

When we moved to Texas, we still made the big pot of posole, but didn't invite friends over.
I often wonder why we didn't continue that tradition.
We still share an animal ornament and our tree has been slowly over run with birds!

This year the excitement has been building for the winter solstice as there will also be a lunar eclipse.
It is a rare event. Historians at the US Naval Observatory only found one previous instance of a lunar eclipse matching the same calendar date as that of the solstice and that was December 21, 1638.

Image from Space Weather

We will feast and make merry this evening.
There is a wonderful stew simmering on the stove and a warm glass of cider has our name on it.
We'll also make sure our feathered friends have plenty of food and water
as we make a conscious connection with Mother Earth.

Image from

Have a cool Yule!

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Christmas Wreaths

Each year different departments at M. D. Anderson Cancer Center
make Christmas wreaths for auction.
The wreaths are displayed on the walk-way between the main building and the Mays building.
The auction goes on for two weeks with the proceeds going to family programs.

Here are a few of my favorites.
Please excuse the quality of the images.
The reflections were horrible, the lighting terrible and there was a lot of pedestrian traffic to shoot around.

Mosaic wreaths

I loved the pink "Ride 'em Cowgirl" wreath with its boa like feathers.
Curious George was a hit with the kids as was
the Mickey and Minnie Mouse wreath.
Then there was the "My Fair Lady" wreath with it's fancy feathers, fabric roses, ribbons, pearls and
plenty of lace.

Mosaic Gulf Coast

It was the "Happy Texas Gulf Coast Holiday" wreath that really captured my attention.
Photos of the gulf coast, fishing lures, weights, shells, lighthouse.
You name it. If it had to do with fishing, it was on the wreath.
There was even part of a fishing pole hanging off the side!
Love the jingle bells, too.
Christmas is less than a week away.
Wishing you well, a JOY filled week, and many blessings this holiday season.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

African Forest

One of our good baseball buddies joined me for breakfast and a members only tour of the new
African Forest at the Houston Zoo.
It was a beautiful morning.

African Forest

Chimps have returned to the Houston Zoo with a family of ten.

Mosaic chimps

The chimps have a half acre to explore. Fun!!!

Mosaic African Forest

Have you heard of Koolookamba?


From the mythical unicorns to the more modern day Yeti and Bigfoot, humans have a long history of fascination with animal legends and lore.

In Gabon today, there is a belief among the human population in a chimpanzee-gorilla hybrid, which they call the "Kooloo-kamba".

Fact or fiction, as visitors move through the African forest, they can find faces of the Koolookamba -- fun for the kids.

Be on the lookout! 

The journey through the African Forest continues next week.

Wishing you well and JOY filled weekend!

Friday, December 17, 2010

Postcard Friendship Friday

Seven days until Christmas!
Time is flying by.
All the packages have been mailed -- yeehaw!
Time to sit, cuddle under a blanket with the kitties, have some eggnog, enjoy some old movies.
Rest, relax, read, dream.

Here's Santa on his rocking horse.
As the horse rocks, you can see more of the village behind Santa.

This is my favorite of the reproduction postcards I found on Galveston Island.

Wishing you well and a JOY filled weekend.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Kuan Yin

Image from Dharma Crafts

Kuan Yin is the Bodhisattva of compassion. Her name means "she who hears the cries of the world". Depicted here in three aspects, she holds a lotus flower symbolizing the innate purity of the Buddha nature, a sutra symbolizing the enlightened wisdom of the Dharma, and a mala, or rosary, symbolizing the vow of the Bodhisattva to save all beings from suffering.

When Mr. Dragon and I started on this journey called cancer, we knew the odds were stacked against us with a 30% survivor rate at three years. The latest news is not good and after much thought, Mr. Dragon has decided against further therapy. So now we enter the final journey for him. From the stars we come and to the stars we will return. We ask, once again, to send your prayers, good thoughts, white light as we complete this journey.

Wishing you well.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Tea Tuesday

How about a wreath titled Christmas Tea for Tea Tuesday?

Mosaic Christmas  Tea Wreath

I thought it was perfect for Christmas and Tuesday tea.

Mosaic Christmas Tea Wreath

and Teacup Tuesday for hosting Tea on Tuesday!

Wishing you well and a yummy cup of tea!

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Pass the Yarn Please!

I've been catching up with my email and look what I found.
Crochet patterns from Lily using their Sugar N Cream cotton yarn.
Aren't they wonderful?

Mosaic Lily Elf
Images from Sugar N Cream

The Elf is named Lily, the coaster has a wonderful candy cane pattern and the Santa holds a tag.

Mosaic Reindeer
Images from Sugar N Cream

My favorite pattern is the one for the reindeer ornament.
I have a thing for reindeer!
One of the stockings is knit and the other crochet.
I almost forgot the Santa ornament.

Pass the Yarn Please! I'm all ready for some more fun hooking!


Mr. Dragon has an appointment with his oncologist Monday and we'll see what the word is on further treatment. 
Thank you again for all your prayers, white light, juju, vibes, hugs, emails.
We really do appreciate all your support.

Wishing you well and a JOY filled week.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Postcard Friendship Friday

We lived on Galveston Island for many years.
 Dickens on The Strand is held there in December .
I remember it as a lovely Victorian celebration of Christmas and found this post card at one of the shops along The Strand.

This is a reproduction moving action Santa greeting postcard.
His arm with the paint brush moves.

There's nothing Santa
more enjoys
Than making toys for
girls and boy,
And in his way he's 
wondrous wise,
For he knows just
what'll please
your eyes.



Mr. Dragon is home with his oxygen.
We learned a very sad lesson ... never believe your doctor until the FINAL path report is in.
Cancer cells were found in the fluid that has collected around his lungs.
We have an appointment on Monday to see what is next for treatment.
Thank you for your support, your prayers, your emails.
It means a great deal to both of us.

As Thich Nhat Hanh says:
"Smile, breathe and go slowly."

Wishing you well and a JOY filled weekend!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Good Morning!

(Image from


Sorry I haven't visited or posted recently.
Mr. Dragon has been in the hospital since Sunday.
The good news, all tests negative for cancer.
The bad news, he needs help breathing and has some other problems.
He may be home today.
Keep those good vibes, juju, prayers, thoughts, white light and all coming!
Thank you!
I promise I'll visit -- hopefully soon!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Medicine Buddha

Image from Dharma Crafts

This is the Medicine Buddha (Bhaisajyaguru in Sanskrit). He is invoked for healing physical illness as well as to pacify the inner afflictions of attachment, hatred and ignorance. His right hand, extended in the gesture of giving, holds the stem of a healing plant. His left hand holds a jar of healing nectar.

Once again we are asking for your good thoughts, prayers, white light, good juju as Mr. Dragon once again is going to M.D. Anderson for more tests next week. He has had a rough time the last two months, continues to lose weight and because of an injury during the surgery has trouble breathing.

Thank all of you so very much.

Wishing you well.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Postcard Friendship Friday

It's December.
The Winter Solstice is just around the corner.
Christmas! Twenty one days away! Oh, My!
The hurrier I go the more behind I get ... or something like that! 

Two postcards to celebrate winter 

and Christmas.

The postcards were made by Current, Inc. I've had them for years and love the art work.

Wishing you well and a fun weekend!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

I Cooked!

Not only did I hook on my blog break, but I cooked, too.

Mr. Dragon was hungry for Brunswick Stew and suggested I add dumplings.

So I did!

This recipe comes from Campbell's Great American Cookbook.
It's one of my favorite cookbooks with a copyright of 1984.
It is a fun cookbook. Good, down home recipes, with a little culinary history and I've only found one recipe that mentions using soup -- and that as a short cut.
Here is the recipe straight from the cookbook.

Brunswick Stew

Everyone agrees that Brunswick Stew is the most Southern of dishes, whether it originated in Brunswick, Georgia, Brunswick County, North Carolina, or Brunswick County, Virginia. Some purists insist that it is not authentic without rabbit or squirrel meat, but most of today's cooks use chicken. The vegetables are certain to include tomatoes, lima beans and corn.

Begin: 3 hours ahead                                                                          12 Servings

1/2 cup diced salt pork
2 pounds chicken parts
8 cups water
3 medium potatoes, diced
3 medium onions, chopped
1 can (28 ounces) tomatoes, chopped
2 cups corn kernels or 1 can (16 ounces) whole kernel golden corn
1 package (10 ounces) frozen lima beans
1 tablespoon Worcestershire
Salt and pepper to taste

1. In 6-quart Dutch oven over high heat, heat salt pork, chicken and water to boiling. Reduce heat to low. Cover; simmer 45 minutes or until chicken is fork-tender.

2. Remove chicken; cool until easy to handle. Cut chicken from bones, discard bones and skin. Cut chicken into bite-sized pieces; return to soup.

3. Stir in remaining ingredients. Reduce heat to low. Simmer, uncovered. 1 hour or until flavors are blended. Yields 16 cups.

Okra Soup: Prepare as above but add 1 pound okra,sliced, to the vegetables.


Wishing you well and a JOY filled day!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

What I Did On My Blog Break!!!

We had a lovely Thanksgiving and I hope you did too!

I enjoyed my short blog break.
I relaxed.
I read.
I cooked.
I got the hooks out and had some hooky fun.

Cassie Helping

Cassie decided she had to help me while I had the camera in hand.
She's getting soooooo big!
Our vet says she has a sweet disposition ... we agree ... most of the time!

Crochet Christmas Mosaic

This is what I'm doing with the hook:
really cute Christmas trees, Gingerbread Men and Houses.
You can find the pattern for the trees (and other wonderful crochet goodies) at

Mosaic Crochet Christmas

The Ginger Bread Man and House are from a pattern of six Christmas potholders that I've had for years.
I think I purchased the pattern from Annie's Attic.
The designer is Crochet Village Designs.

Crochet Christmas Tree

The trees are fun, but I have to tell you I don't like the yarn I used to make them.
It was left over from a doily project I made last year.
The sparkly thread running through the yarn has a mind of its own.
I want it to go one way and it wants to go another! 
But it does make a pretty, glitzy, Christmas tree!

I'd like to thank Mary for being our hostess for Mosaic Monday.
Each mosaic is different and has its own story to tell. 

Wishing you all well and a JOY filled week!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Gratitude Makes You Happy

Why Gratitude Makes You Happy & Wealthy

by Christine KaneGratitude is more than being thankful one day a year. Gratitude is a practice. For some, it's a way of life.

Why do some people swear by the practice of gratitude? Why do these people have joy-filled andabundant lives?

In other words, why does gratitude make you happy and wealthy?

• Because gratitude is about presence. 

It's about waking up in this moment and being here -really being here - and noticing what's around you. Most people are so busy thinking about the next thing, or about their horrid past, that they don't wake up and look around at their present moment - the only moment there is.

• Because gratitude is about honoring YOUR precious life. 

Do you ever compare your life with someone else's? Do you ever wish your life were better and more like [insert famous person's name here]? Sometimes we can lose ourselves in wondering how we "measure up" to some standard set by our families or by the media. Comparison is the mind killer. The antidote is gratitude.

Gratitude requires that you validate your own life. (And you really don't have any other life, do you?) It forces you to say YES to the gift that is you. The choices you've made and the changes you've gone through -- they have brought you here. Even if here is a place that needs a little adjustment, that's okay. There are always gifts in any present moment.

• Because gratitude is about attracting. 

It's difficult to attract abundance and joy if you are constantly saying "no" to what IS. You say "no" each time you focus on the future or past, or when you criticize something that is in your present moment.

Attraction is about saying Yes. When you say Yes, you shift.

Gratitude says, "Yes, I love this!" And then more of this is attracted, because the this is what you're focusing on.

• Because gratitude is about choice. 

How you translate any situation is the situation. What you choose to see is the truth (for you).

This isn't proposing that you live in denial or phoniness. It's reminding you that your translation of any life situation is your choice. We've all heard stories of people who have ignored others' translations of their talent, their projects, their art, their looks, their lives. These people chose their own translations andsucceeded. You always have a choice when it comes to how you look at things. Choose to choose gratitude.

• Because gratitude is about wisdom. 

I think people believe they're being smart if they criticize, complain, and focus on the problems of the world around them.

Smart? Maybe.

Clever? Sure.

But not wise.

It is wise to look for and find the knowing place in your heart. It is wise to choose joy. It is wise to honor your riches. It is wise to focus on and grow the blessings of your life.

• Because gratitude is about recognition. 

Use your power of focus to hone in on beauty and on what makes your heart sing. Recognize the spirit in your life. It's all around you waiting to be noticed. In the words of Franz Kafka, "It will roll in ecstasy at your feet."

• Because gratitude is about receptivity. 

Gratitude makes you receptive. It makes you a vessel, waiting to be filled.

I carry a tiny notebook with me everywhere I go. In it, I write down song ideas. I write down quotes I hear. I write down ideas for stage stories. As I do that, I become more receptive, and more ideas and songs come to me. It's a tool that says to my subconscious, "Send more my way!" And the subconscious always responds.

Gratitude is the same way. It says, "I am receptive! Send more!" And more arrives.

• Because gratitude is about creativity. 

Creativity is really all about attention. (So is genius.)

When I write a song, I build a relationship with that song. I spend time with it. I get to know it. I pay attention to it. Artists do the same thing with drawings. They spend time in rapt attention, and the drawing is born.

Gratitude is how we Live Creative. It is a creative act to notice and pay attention to the moments of your life. Some days it's an enormous act of creativity to find things for which to be thankful.

Start today.

And have a Thanksgiving of presence, creativity, and gratitude!

Christine Kane is the Mentor to Women Who are Changing the World. She helps women uplevel their lives, their businesses and their success. Her weekly LiveCreative eZine goes out to over 12,000 subscribers. If you are ready to take your life and your world to the next level, you can sign up for a F.R.E.E. subscription at
See Christine's blog at


Snap is still on a short blogging break, but couldn't resist sharing this with you today.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Postcard Friendship Friday

The Friday before Thanksgiving and one more postcard from

Hearty Thanksgiving Greetings

The card is postmarked 1915.
Aunt Ida must have sent a Thanksgiving postcard to Master Ralph 
each year as this was not the only Thanksgiving card from Aunt Ida in
the NYPL collection.
I enjoyed her comment 'I was very pleased with your letter'.
Letter writing -- a lost art.

Beth is our hostess for Postcard Friendship Friday.

I going to be taking a small break from blogging.
Think I will do some reading, crochet a little, and relax.
See you after Thanksgiving.

Everyday should be a day of thanks -- don't you agree?!

Wishing you well, a JOY filled weekend and to my American friends
a wonderful Thanksgiving.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Tea Tuesday

Today I'm having a cup of Tazo Lotus Green Tea 
in what I call my rice with dragon set from China.

The pattern in the clay is made using rice. Once it is fired, only the pattern is left.
You can see a flower outline on the tea pot.

The dragon (painted in a lovely blue) is found on the inside bottom of the cup and on the saucer.

I had dim sum and tea with a friend and was reminded of one of my favorite tea stories from China when my friend tapped two fingertips on the table after I poured the tea.

Over the years the Chinese imperial court adopted the custom of drinking tea. They drank it in the ornamental gardens, or in special small buildings dedicated to making and serving tea to family or friends. In the cities, pavilions for taking tea became meeting places and were visited by men who would talk politics or business or simply relax. Special equipment was developed, culminating in the decorative pots and cups that we see today. Taking tea became a formal process and different styles of making and drinking tea developed. Some of these special traditions remain today.

One such tradition is to tap on the table and there is a story behind this. An emperor was concerned about the living conditions of his subjects and wished to see for himself what life was like outside the court. He dressed as an ordinary man and, taking a few guards with him, also dressed in ordinary clothes, went to a tea pavilion in the town. He asked for tea, and a pot of tea with cups was brought to the table. The waiter poured the tea and set the pot beside the emperor. When they had drunk the cups of tea, the emperor served more tea to his men. The men needed a secret way to show their gratitude and respect to their emperor and, using two fingers, his guards bent their knuckles and knocked then on the table. This was to signify kneeling before him. A reference to this tradition survives today: when your host pours you a cup of tea you should tap your first two fingertips twice on the table as thanks.

There are lots of Tea Parties in Blogland.
Two of my favorites:
for tea cups on parade be sure to visit Teacup Tuesday.
Thank you ladies!

Silver jasmine is a delicate flower that adds a sweet fragrance and light flavor to green tea.
(365 Things Every Tea Lover Should Know)

Wishing you well, a JOY filled week and a great cup of tea!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Thanksgiving is Coming!

Thanksgiving is coming!

Fall Door Mosaic

The neighbors are getting ready!

Mosaic Autumn Doors

Last year my blogging buddy Christina found a fun Thanksgiving MEME.
I thought I'd repeat it this year.

1. Which do you like better: Cooking at your house or going elsewhere?
I like cooking at home. This year marks one year since Mr. Dragon's cancer was diagnosed. We are going to have a quiet day at home.

2. Do you buy a fresh or frozen turkey?
For several years I bought a fresh heirloom turkey, but was disappointed the last year I tried one. This year I'm preparing a turkey breast (frozen).

3. What kind of stuffing?
Granny's cornbread dressing and this year, I'm going to add a few cranberries for color.

4. Sweet potato or pumpkin pie?
Neither. Apple pie!

5. Do you believe that turkey leftovers are a curse, or the point of the whole thing?
Can never have enough turkey leftovers!!! So many wonderful things to make with them!

6. Which side dish would provoke a riot if you left it off the menu?
Bourbon sweet potatoes

7. Do you save the carcass to make soup or stock?
You bet!

8. What do you wish you had that would make preparing Thanksgiving dinner easier?
After all these years, I think I have it all figured out. Don't know what (or where) I'd put a new gadget!

9. Do you get up at the crack of dawn to have dinner ready in the early afternoon, or do you eat at your normal dinner hour?
I learned early on to get as much done before Thanksgiving as possible so that I just have to warm things up. We'll be watching parades and football games. We eat in the early afternoon and snack the rest of the day! 

10. If you go to somebody else's house, what is your favorite dish to bring?
Pumpkin cheesecake or apple pie

11. What do you wish your guests wouldn't bring to your house?
If you have a cold, please stay home!

12. Does your usual mix of guests result in drama, or is it a group you're happy to see?
A group I'm happy to see.

13. What's your absolute favorite thing on the menu?

14. What are you thankful for this year?
I'm thankful that the love of my life, my knight in shining armor, my best friend is sharing Thanksgiving with me. I'm thankful for my *family by choice* (you know who you are). I'm thankful for another beautiful day on Mother Earth.

Mosaic Monday is hosted by the lovely Mary.
Each mosaic is different. Each has its own story to tell

Wishing you well and a JOY filled week.

Sunday Morning

Gulf of Mexico at Sunrise

 "Our ancestors viewed the earth as rich and bountiful, which it is. Many people in the past also saw nature as inexhaustibly sustainable, which we know is the case only if we care for it. It is not difficult to forgive destruction in the past that resulted from ignorance. Today, however, we have access to more information, and it is essential that we re-examine ethically what we have inherited, what we are responsible for, and what we will pass on to coming generations."

~His Holiness the Dalai Lama

Friday, November 12, 2010

Postcard Friendship Friday

Another postcard for Thanksgiving from the New York Public Library Digital Collection.
This one has memories for me.
I was raised in New Mexico, The Land of Enchantment 
and spent many a Fall feast day with friends at Jemez Pueblo.
It was a different world. Lots of good food that seemed to never end.
Colorful dances to celebrate the harvest.
Another world.

This postcard was published by the Detroit Publishing Company sometime between 1907-08 and titled Hopi Thanksgiving.

The Detroit Publishing Company was an American photographic publishing firm best known for its large assortment of photochrom postcards.

The company was founded as the Detroit Photographic Company in 1890s by Detroit businessman and publisher William A. Livingstone, Jr. The company had the exclusive rights to the photochrom process for the American market. Photochrom is a technique developed in Switzerland which allows the color enhancement of black and white photography with the means of chromolithography. It allowed the company to mass produce photorealistic color motifs long before color photography became economically feasible.

Thank you to the lovely Beth, our hostess for Postcard Friendship Friday.

Wishing you well and a JOY filled weekend.