Time Out


A R T   B I Z   J A M


I signed up months ago when it seamed like a far off, fun way to spend a few days in an attempt, to rest, refresh and refocus on, the (my) art. Where it came from and possibly where it’s going and why.

A time to retreat from the extremely busy year of working, renovating, moving, etc.

And, I expect, a time to reflect, as well.

A time of learning from artist friends & associates/colleagues in the BIZ, who will be teaching.


As an extra bonus, a time to share the experience with my graphic artist daughter, Kate.

Blue Berry Beauty



The blueberries are ready to pick in the Midwest so, we had no other choice but to head out early this morning, to Huckleberry Hollow, berry patch extraordinaire.


The report we heard was that the bushes, were loaded! And they were. Row after row of beautiful blue brambles so, we were off, grabbed our pails and picked till our hearts content. Well, until we had picked twenty six quarts anyway, between four of us. Even then, it was difficult to walk away from the blue bounty.


Yum fresh berries!

BluBrryPickPro BluBrryPick4

Berries for baking . . . this fall?


And some to try now of course.


And maybe, some to paint?

Rock Church Picnic

StPPicnicChurch2Once a year the “Old Rock Church” (St Patrick’s of Armagh) near our house holds a picnic in a fundraising effort to maintain the church, cemetery and grounds. Yesterday our family attended the annual event for the first time. The day began with an 11:00 service which was uniquely inspiring, just to be sitting within the (rarely open) historic country church walls.StPPicnicChurchThe stations of the cross are depicted in these unusual antique framed prints which hang in typical fashion down both sides of the outside walls. Beautiful!StPPicnicChurch4StPPicnicChurch3A single bagpipe followed the service in memorial.StPPicninBagpipes

Favorite Summer Pick

Blackberries©jwfWe’re having a difficult time catching up with ourselves this summer due to a heavier than normal schedule. That’s why it was especially nice last week to take time out for some pure peaceful picking. Blackberry picking that is!Stainedfingers

My daughter found a quaint berry picking farm, Huckleberry Hollow, earlier this year, just thirty to forty minutes from us. It was a perfect morning, unseasonably cool and almost no other pickers. Although there were far more red berries than black, we still picked over 10 quarts of ripe berries. HHOfficeHHBlkBerryBushHHBlkBerryBush2

I washed and froze all of mine and look forward to blackberry cobbler, my favorite, this fall. Yum!HHBlackberries

Office Mate

I had the pleasure of seeing my daughter’s new offices for the first time and helping to decorate her space over the weekend. The new building is great and half the distance she previously had to commute. And – She now has twice the space and two large walls of windows, a huge treat.

A little over three months ago, her work place experienced a fire and the building was not salvageable. So, after working three months from home, it was fun to see her get settled into the new digs. She works as a graphic artist and it was a relief to learn that her hard drive (containing the majority of the company’s design files) did survive. However, all other equipment, furniture and supplies including ruler, Pantone books, light box, stapler, nearly everything, etc. were purchased new. Nice! ThinkingMan©KateFrisch Above is one of her art pieces from a college assignment who is now keeping her company on the job. Decorating updates to follow.

Atlanta Or Bust?

The 2013 Amarica’s Gift Mart in Atlanta is scheduled for this week. I’ve gone back and forth seems like, a million times, on my decision to attend this year. I’m due to depart for there today. Still on the fence. I guess I won’t know until I’m out the door. God willing, is my guess. 😉


Thank You

A sincere thank you to Christy Starr, the proprietor at Helen’s Hen House quilt shop in Florissant Missouri. Christy was kind enough to invite me to share my fabric designs with customers at the shop’s annual open house event.

This was my first visit to the historic Meyers House & Barn where I spent a delightful afternoon. Upon my arrival, my mouth agape with surprise, I quickly realized it was going to be a FULL (Hen) house! Although filled with nervous excitement, my eyes attempted to take in all of the charming details of the building, grounds and goodies inside as I prepared to set up. The creaking wide planked floor boards added that much more to the authenticity and ambiance of the 1860’s building.Christy and her staff had several projects made from three of my new fabric lines that were featured throughout the shop.

“Bakers Dozen” snowmen apron and table topper.“Creepers Peepers” and “Sewing Seeds” in a welcoming room (prepared especially for me)!

This is where I enjoyed visiting with a wonderful group of creative and kindred patrons. Among them, I was surprised to learn, an art teacher, card designer, ceramic artisan, thread artist and quilt/sewing enthusiasts of course. For an added treat I became re-acquainted with a couple who have been collectors (former customers) of my hand painted Christmas ornaments made long before I broke into art licensing.

Stories of projects using my Hungry Animal Alphabet (& other former children’s collections) for grands were shared. One gram brought in a particularly special project for me to sign. I was honored, And grateful.It was a privilege to be a part of such a warm group and inviting shop.

Congrats Christy! Additional Hen House Quilt Shop photos on Facebook.

Market Mayhem

A Welcome site – Just returned from Quilt Market Wednesday, Halloween, and in plenty of time for tricks and treats. Although the event was fun filled, inspiring and informative, our homecoming from this trip, was especially appreciated. Only two (of the thirteen) hours out of Houston, three deer dashed onto the (75 mph zone) interstate, right in front of us without warning. With no time to react, we struck one of the deer head on. The impact was traumatic. Fortunately however, we stayed upright, on the road and were able to pull off to the safety of the shoulder where we tried to settle nerves.

Looks like I caught a glimpse of our guardian angel’s wing in this photo:

I also think . . . we are finished with road trips for 2012.The lighter side of our quilt market experience can be seen at

Tidings of Great Joy, LLC on Facebook.

Supporting The Arts

This past week I was asked to help construct a display as part of a local, home school group’s Spring Art Show. We were shown an (tiny photo) example using a large cardboard box as the exhibitor’s show space. So, pretty much, I was winging it.

Spray painting a cardboard box was a first for me and harder than it sounds. I recommend brushing the paint on, for anyone interested.

Not knowing the exact space size, I thought adjustable walls might be the way to go. So, I rigged a simple system using brass brads, cardboard buttons and string.

Then it was time to select the art, mount on to poster board and assemble.

The rewarding results above, considering however, that the art teacher rearranged my precise placement of the original pieces! Always an art director that decides, they know better, eh?

And . . . our proud artist exhibitor, John.