In the news!

I’m thrilled with the article in today’s paper concerning the Kentucky Guild of Artists and Craftsmen member exhibit at the Carnegie Art Center in Covington, KY.

Thanks, Jackie, for the great write-up and Liz, for the cool pictures!!


I know I should be finishing the last three weeks of my trip to PNG and OZ – all the pics are up but they need words to make them understandable.  I’ve lost the momentum at the moment as it has shifted to other more pressing things. Like…

…remembering all those who serve and have served in our country’s armed forces – this is Memorial Day weekend here in the US.

…cleaning up after our recent spate of storms. Nothing serious here, just lots of tree debris.

…making plans for a small papermaking gathering here in June.

…writing two articles with deadlines in the next two days.

…making sufficient samples for one of the articles.

…nailing down all the necessary aspects of a teen/river art project.

…working up plans for a community art project.

…hosting and attending various family functions and gatherings – all good fun ones. And setting up future ones.

…giving two presentations on my OZ/PNG trip.

…giving a mudcloth for quilters presentation – which got chased into the church basement due to a nearby tornado.

…quilting some of my mudcloth to use as samples at the above mentioned presentation – which I then forgot to take along!

…making plans for a couple possible trips.

…finalizing various teaching plans for the rest of the year.

…getting excited about the upcoming births of our first two grandchildren!


I promise, there WILL be final reporting on my two weeks in PNG plus the last week in Australia at the Orange Forum.  Just not promising exactly when….

A day of sights and smells and flavors

Easter and family got in the way of continued blogging – sorry about that!

Just a few miscellaneous remarks first:  We saw a bandicoot crossing the road one night – a little furball scooting along. Very few wild animals were sp0otted during my whole journey- in Papua New Guinea as well as Australia. Not sure what that means…

And while with Di and Chris, I pitched in and did a bunch of the cooking and cleaning up and laundry duties to give them time to work on some art grant proposals with looming deadlines. I’ve since heard that both proposals were accepted and grants allocated!

One of the meals I prepared was  fresh pumpkin soup – not too bad for working without a recipe!

On March 16 we headed to the northern coast of Tasmania so I could participate in the biennial National Basketry Gathering starting on the 17th. Along the way we saw and experienced:

– black cows with a wide white band around their middles – quite the sight!

– evidence of earlier bush fires and logging/burning activity

-lovely lakes in the Central Highlands

-an old salt of a fellow at the Bothwell coffee shop – postcard perfect!

-a helicopter taking off next to the road – we weren’t too close, thank goodness!

-Steppes sculptures in the middle of nowhere

-the pub and hotel in Miena with a special on fish and chips and the first unfriendly Tassies – I think they didn’t like the fact that we were coming in at the very end of their lunch hour shift

-miniature ferns and pencil pine and ice age rock fields along the boardwalk of a national park

-the Tasmania Regional Arts Council offices in Latrobe and a great visitors center with museum

-an excellent little motel in downtown Devonport where we stayed in and had a great Indian take-out dinner

-great fresh ice cream – I think it was blackberry – along the rode to Devonport

With some time to kill the next morning, we drove over to Burnie to visit the Makers of Burnie center – based on the papermaking mill that used to be central to the city, the new center had a large papermaking display and working area plus a number of spaces for various local artists to display, sell and demo their work. We each made some recycled papers with embossed Australian animals of our choice. I also picked up some regional papers – wombat and kangaroo poo paper! Can’t make that back home, now can I?!?!?

Next up – the National Basketry Gathering experience!

Relevant pics now online!

A day on the beach(es)

A lovely sunny Sunday to take a ride – and so we did. Started out only a half hour later than originally planned (8am) – we were finishing a bit a breakfast when neighbor Steve arrived ready to go. A bit of fruit and water packed and we were off.

Drove up along the east coast, stopping along the way to visit an old Anglican  church with stained glass windows brought over from England very early on (don’t have exact dates in front of me) and an interesting cemetery – they’ve added a crematorium wall alongside all the old headstones to keep up with the times.

Stopped in Orford at the mouth of the Prosser River for a morning tea break. Also took in the continuously running garage sale in town – just to check things out. Continued on northward, catching sight of Maria Island and Freycinet Peninsula along the way. With the sun and sky so beautiful, the coves and bays were extraordinarily gorgeous – perfect aquamarines and deep blues against white beaches.

A short stop at Kate’s Berry Farm was a must – mostly for their homemade ice creams using their fresh berries! Blackberry ice cream and raspberry sorbet were the hits with our group.

We made a stop to see the Spiky Bridge along the road – made by convicts early in the state’s history, it is a wonderfully built stone structure – very wide with these big spiky ends of rocks sticking up along the railing – no known reason why!

The road leading to the Freycinet National Forest had a visitors info stop where we met a gal from MI who is now living in Tasmania. I didn’t recognize her accent at first – and when she heard me talk she switched back into her “american speak”! Steve was a great one throughout the day for finding out where folks were from.

A lunch stop was in order before going into the National Forest area, so we treated ourselves to big bowls of fish chowder at Madge Malloy’s in Coles Bay – too many fish in the pot to recall along with potatoes, carrots, and several other things I don’t remember – thick and hearty and filling!

The park service has a lovely visitors center where we met an American woman and her Japanese partner – she is a papermaker interested in natural dyes and he is a photogrpher/designer artist. We checked out a small dark purple berry suggested by one of the rangers and had a good chat about dyes and papermaking. They were already away from Japan when the earthquake hit and haven’t been able to find out about their home yet, continuing on with their travel plans until time to go home. We wished them well.

Wineglass Bay is apparently one of the top 10 things you are supposed to see before you die and it is on the easter shore of the Freycinet Peninsula within the park. Two ways to get to it – walk up through the gap between two mountains or take a boat tour around. It was hot by the time we got there and late in the afternoon, so we opted to see the lighthouse at Cape Tourville and Sleepy Bay  – both short walks with fantastic views of the surrounding bays and ocean. Lots of pics that I’ll post later.

Went north a bit more to Bicheno where we encountered a gathering of teens in town for an outdoor concert. Take away pizza from the popular spot was eaten in the triangular park in the middle of the town.

That was when Chris realized he left his hat on the table back in Coles Bay. A quick call to Maggie assured us it was still there, so after disappointing the seagulls who were waiting for pizza crust handouts, we traveled back in the deepening twilight for the hat.

Three hours later in full darkness we landed back in Connely’s Marsh. Tired but extremely satisfied with the adventures and sights of the day.

Paper and Books

Today was filled with paper and books and all the lovely people involved with them.

After doing some mudcloth with Sue last night (great red and decent tan from local muds),  I packed up, bade a fond farewell to Sue and Andrew and the Dandenongs, and loaded into Tricia’s car this morning.

Along the way we made a stop at a local art center – really a cool place(even though I can’t remember the name right now. Built specifically for making and exhibiting art of all sorts, the spaces were large and open and full of light. They used art all over to decorate the place, from leaf tiles in the sidewalks to the wooden fence tops carved in whimsical figures.

While gazing through the windows at a large hooked wall hanging in one painting room, we were literally pulled into the space by the instructor who asked me to show off my scrumbled vest that I was wearing. Too funny! Nice bunch  of ladies who had been painting together for 13 years.  From there we visited a $2 store in Box Hill on the way to a lovely lunch at Gail’s home with seven members of the papermakers group.

A number of scrumptious dishes (topped off by fresh watermelon and homemade baklava) comprised our feast.  Gail then shared lots of pictures of some super paper pieces from various exhibits she had seen. She also pulled out books that the group had made in the past and there was some sharing of really cool work that various people had done. The papers were gorgeous and the ideas and skill of the makers was top-notch. What a pleasure to soak it all in!

Tricia and I then had the fun of checking out Gail’s backyard where the ‘monster’ pumpkin was overtaking the lemon tree!  A HUGE pumpkin vine was literally swamping a good-sized lemon tree which was filled with ripening fruit. And in the midst of it all there was a basketball sized pumpkin being propped up by stakes so it wouldn’t break the lemon tree limbs. Gail also had papyrus growing along with a number of other good papermaking plants.

We did a bit of clean-up at Gail’s and then the three of us headed off to a BBQ being held as a joint meeting of the basketmakers and the bookmakers. Another round of delicious salads and desserts (fiber people REALLY know how to cook and eat!) along with some wine and sausages/hamburgers/veggie burgers.

To fill out the evening and provide something to do, they had four vats working for marbling paper. Everyone was invited to do some marbled sheets (I’ve got one drying out downstairs at the moment) and I think pretty much everyone marbled at least one sheet.

Bags got transferred to Anne’s car. After she made sure all was cleaned up (such are the duties of the group president!), we headed off to her home in the city proper (Melbourne) where I am staying for the next several days. I was met by Boris, an imperial and egotistical  Russian blue cat, and Tim Tim, a more sedate tiger.

All in all a good one.  Time to  tuck in – feeling bushed for the day.