Monday, September 27, 2010

Tea Tuesday

The Guywan (Chinese Covered Cup) has been used in China since about 1350.
It is a brewing vessel and drinking cup in one, consisting of saucer, bowl, and lid that all function together.

The lid is used to stir the tea, serves as a filter holding back the leaves when you sip, and covers the cup and keeps the liquor warm. You keep sipping and adding water as long as the leaves yield flavor. With a high quality green tea, you should be able to brew three cups.

There is a Chinese saying that the first cup is most fragrant, the second sweetest, and the third strongest.

There is a wonderful article on the Guywan at the Atlantic if you interested in further reading.

This is my modern version of the Guywan.
I found it at World Market.
I had to have the mug with the dragons ... of course!
Complete with infuser.

It makes a fine cup of tea.

Teacup Tuesday is hosted each week by Martha and Terri.
Be sure to visit all the tea parties and see the teacups on parade!

Wishing you well and a JOY filled week!

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Mosaic Monday

One of my best buddies is an art teacher.
Every now and then we have a play day.
She tries out new techniques on me or shows me things she has recently learned.
Sometimes I help do the backgrounds for a project she has coming up in class.
Last week we got together.
The piece I'm working on is 24" x 24" -- larger than I usually work.
When it is finished it folds to make a book.

Mixed Media Mosaic

I have a long way to go before it is finished.
More paint, Caran deArche watersoluble pastels, more stamps, more texture.
The black and white areas need to be colored in.
I need to work on some of the transparencies that didn't get gelled down completely.
You get the idea.
If you look carefully, you can see some of the wonderful texture that is beginning to pop out.

Mixed Media

Last week I showed you some crochet I'm working on.
Here is the pumpkin block all finished except for the row of black squares that goes all the way around.
The shadow on the right side -- Miss Cassie was checking out HER new blanket.
Wondering if it would be finished in time for Halloween.

The lovely Mary is the hostess for Mosaic Monday.
Each mosaic is different. Each has a story to tell.


- The washing machine died on Sunday. One load of wash to finish. We put a makeshift clothesline in the garage and hung all the wet things. Mr. Dragon says the washer needs a new transmission. (Who knew a washing machine had a transmission?!!!) Since China bought Maytag, Maytag just isn't the same.
I think we will try to have it repaired and see what happens before we take the plunge and buy something new.

- Busy week coming up. My turn at the doctor appointments. Monday I see my eye guy. Wednesday I go in for the lab work for the appointment I have with the internist the following week.

- Last week we took little Riley to the vet for her cardiac exam. The vet who does the ultrasound on her is reported to have said "I don't know why this cat is still alive."!!!! Our vet tweaked her meds and home she came. She's in no pain and seems to enjoy watching Teddy and Cassie. We will carry on.

- The weather guys are promising us a cool front. Nothing yet, but I'll continue to hope!

Wishing you well and a JOY filled week!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Mail Call!

All of you know how much I love Mail Call.

Today the postman brought a gift from a blogging friend, Maria-Thérèse,
a very talented young lady who was celebrating her Blogoversary by having a give-a-way.

I love carousels and this arrived in my post today.
I can't begin to tell you how beautiful it is.
Scanning doesn't do Maria-Thérèse Andersson's work justice at all.

Be sure you visit with her.
She has turned her Abandoned Amusement Park series into a calendar!


Next is a piece of mail art I made.
Mixed-media, paint, paper, stamps, tag, glue stick and loads of fun.

I'm keeping the original and I made lots of copies to use as mailing labels.
Be on the lookout!

Wishing you well and a JOY filled day!

Monday, September 20, 2010

Tea Tuesday

Tuesday is coming and that means time for TEA!

I was listening to Music from the Tea Lands while I composed this post.

I'm sharing two teapots we purchased in New Mexico from the husband and wife team that makeup 
Rabbit Art Works.
He makes the pots and she does the painting.
Both teapots are signed and dated: one made in 1989 and the other in 1990.

The top row of the mosaic shows a close-up of the smaller pot and its lid.
The second row shows the larger pot and its lid.
The third row shows the back of both pots.

I have other porcelain pieces from Rabbit Art Works:
 some candlesticks and a vase with a beautiful kitty illustration.
I wondered if they were still in the ceramics business and I googled and YES -- they are shown in several galleries in Santa Fe.

I think I like these pots because they have personalities besides making a good cup of tea.
They are just the right size and shape (nice big bellies) for brewing tea. 

Tuesday is time for tea in the blogging world!
Teacup Tuesday is hosted by Martha and Terri.
Join in the celebration of Tea by visiting.

I have a couple more tea blogs for you:
Angela  at Tea With Friends

Have a wonderful Tea Tuesday and a JOY filled week.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Mosaic Monday

In the spirit of Fall and Halloween, I have been crocheting.
 All these little squares:
some in solid colors and some in two colors.

Then I started to put them all together.

Do you think I'll finish?

I can only work when SHE is asleep!

Mosaic Monday is hosted by the lovely Mary.
Each mosaic is different. Each a story to tell.

Wishing you well and a wonderful week full of JOY!

Friday, September 17, 2010

Postcard Friendship Friday

Do you think cats can be artists?

From the back cover:
"The fact that some domestic cats are able to make marks with paint has always been explained by biologists as an instinctive form of territorial marking behavior. Now, each one of these lavishly photographed postcards, selected from the book Why Cats Paint (10 Speed Press), provides graphic evidence that some cats' marks are aesthetically motivated and should be regarded as genuine works of non-primate art."

From the back of the postcard: "This medieval bestiary illustration acknowledges the practice of 'painting' by cats in the Middle Ages. Because cats were regarded as agents of the devil during this period, they are depicted here as evil  alchemists about to transmute the caged bird and sleeping dog, prey and enemy of the cat, into gold."

From the back of the postcard: "Whether these cats are engaged in territorial marking behavior, as many biologists would contend, or actually decorating the fish for aesthetic reasons, remains open to debate. However, the fact that the cats showed no aggression towards each other during the two-hour painting session, strongly suggests it was a genuine aesthetic experience."

I think little Miss Cassie could be the next Rembrandt Kitty.
She's been practicing on the bathroom mirror! 

Postcard Friendship Friday is hosted by the lovely Beth.
Each week you'll see a variety of postcards from the old to the new, the comic to the serious.
Enjoy the visit!

Happy PFF!

Wishing you well and a JOY filled weekend.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Tuesday Tribute

Life can be so strange.
I was sitting in the waiting room at M.D. Anderson waiting for Mr. Dragon to finish his CTScan,
when I got a telephone call from one our favorite people who happens to be a wonderful author.
He called to ask what had happened to David.
I said "what do you mean what happened to David".
And he told me David had the age of 38.

(From Murder By The Book)

We met David at Murder By The Book some 20 years ago.
We love mysteries and David was the best at his job.
He loved his customers and the mystery genre and knew what each of us liked.
He always had a smile on his face and a new book to suggest.
He married his wife, McKenna, just over 2 years ago.
They had a fairy tale wedding in Scotland.
We can not imagine what McKenna the MBTB family must be going through.

We have wonderful memories.
Memories of dinners with authors.
The first one was with Christopher Moore and if any of you read Christopher you know we had one heck of a good time at a very good South American restaurant.
David was kind enough to invite us on other dinners and we got to know him and McKenna better.

We both feel such sadness this evening.

I haven't posted a Tuesday Tribute in awhile, but I wanted to pay tribute this evening to a young man who brought joy into so many lives and whose smile and knowledge will be greatly missed.

We'll miss you, David. Enjoy that great library in the heavens.

This and That

We had some wonderful Tilapia filets.
I didn't want to grill them (too hot outside).
No blackened (Mr. Dragon isn't ready for that much spice).
So, this is what I did.

- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees
- Cover a cookie sheet with aluminum foil and spray with (S)Pam
- Place Tilapia filets on cookie sheet
- Sprinkle the filets lightly with dried thyme
- Sprinkle the filets lightly with Parmesan cheese
- Bake until the cheese starts to melt.

Simple, easy and oh, so good!

(Dishes found at Cost Plus World Market)



- It is still HOT, but we are only running the drip in the garden every other day. Still watering everything in pots daily. (Let's not talk about last months water bill!)

- Picked up a cherry tomato plant  and some dianthus at Home Depot yesterday.

- Busy week this week. Mr. Dragon is six months post-op and is having tests this week. We ask once again to keep those prayers, good thoughts, white light, good juju, vibes coming and we thank YOU.

- Astros baseball game on Wednesday. 

- Because it is a crazy week I didn't prepare any tea for you, but I do have a blog for you to visit.
Angela at Tea for Friends is having a give-a-way you tea lovers might be interested in.
Please drop by, say Hi and tell her Snap sent you!
I hope to have some tea for you next week.

 Wishing you well, a beautiful day and JOY to YOU

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Mosaic Monday

Autumn begins on September 22.
You'd never know it here at Twisty Lane.
The temperatures are still in the mid to high nineties with feels like temps in the 100's. 
We are getting tired of it -- to put it mildly.
But I have hope.

And it's what I've been finding in the grocery and book stores that has me thinking that Fall may indeed be just around the corner.
Magazines announcing Halloween!!!
Better Homes and Gardens, Southern Lady, Gooseberry Patch, Country Living

They are all filled with beautiful images of Fall.
Pumpkins, gourds, leaves, beautiful oranges, reds, browns and greens.

Let's not forget the wonderful crafts and recipes.
My mouth is watering and my fingers are itching!

I'm ready!!!
Won't you join me?
Grab a cup of tea, a stack of magazines, and dream of Fall.

Mosaic Monday is hosted by the lovely Mary.
Each mosaic is different. Each has a story to tell.
You'll enjoy your visit!

Wishing you well and a week filled with JOY!

Friday, September 10, 2010

Postcard Friendship Friday

Fall isn't far away and I know that because the lovely Beth has a postcard about cranberries today!

I do love the fall and I love cranberries, but I don't have a postcard that fits so,
here's a postcard that pretty much sums up the week here at Twisty Lane.

The lovely Cassie had an appointment with the Vet this week to be spayed so it has been very quiet the last couple of days as she recuperates. I'm happy to report that she is getting back to full speed and into mischief. 

The back of the postcard reads: "Cat, Rock, and Peonies, 18th century. (Chinese), 
Painting on silk. 
Courtesy of the Freer Gallery of Art,
Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D. C.

The card is from a collection of cat postcards published by Running Press Books.

"CATS - what is it about them that appeals to the artist?
Perhaps it's their eyes: now dagger-sharp and penetrating, now new moons of contentment.

Maybe it's their range of attitudes: the hunter-cat, the regal cat, the cat asleep on the windowsill.

Or is it the fluid way these shape-shifting creatures carry themselves as they slink and pounce and curl themselves into drowsy bundles?

The subtlety of their temperament and their magnificence of form have earned cats a place in our hearts and at our hearths. We admire their independence, ponder their secrets (for surely they keep secrets from us), and indulge their idiosyncrasies.

The images in this book, created by artist from divergent cultures and different centuries, attest to the enduring appeal of the creature whose enigmatic personality stirs our curiosity. Here is a living creature that captivates and astonishes us like some mythological beast: here is the Cat."

Postcard Friendship Friday is hosted each week by the lovely Beth.
Each week you'll see a variety of postcards from the old to the new, the comic to the serious, a true variety.

Wishing you well and a wonderful week.


Sunday, September 5, 2010

Mosaic Monday: Blooming in Musashi's Garden

I thought I'd take you on a brief tour of what is blooming in Musahi's Garden on this holiday weekend.
The heat hasn't kept us from enjoying some blooms.

You may notice that some blooms look foggy
The humidity has been so high that the lens would fog over.
I liked the look, so I left the images as is.

You can always depend on the old-fashioned zinnia to hang in there in the heat.

Because it is a holiday weekend, Mary is taking this Monday off from Mosaic Monday.

Enjoy the holiday.
Have a wonderful week.
Wishing you well and much JOY!

Friday, September 3, 2010

Postcard Friendship Friday

This week on Postcard Friendship Friday, the lovely Beth is talking about returning to school.

 School has already started here.
Fall and cooler weather can't be far behind!

I'd like to share two postcards from the Pomegranate Collection:
Gal Pals: Women's Friendship and Association.

The back of the card reads: "Reading lesson, Ontario, Oregon, 1939"
Photograph by Dorothea Lange

"Reading lesson at a farm workers' community school, Woodville, California, 1942"

Each week you can see a variety of postcards from the old to the new, 
the comic to the serious, a true variety.

Happy PFF!

Joy to You!