Category Archives: i quote

sorry i was gone so long…


i had a date with netflix.

well kind of.

i was helping our daughter find, and move into a new place in santa monica.  a friend of ours graciously offered her son’s condo to us for a week or two.  had no idea it would take 3 weeks.  and i don’t think they did either.  i owe a debt of gratitude to this family.  one, for making it affordable for us to stay.  and, two, for giving my daughter and i three weeks out of our lives we will never forget.  thank you from the bottom of my heart.  and hers too.


three weeks.   well, let me tell you… a lot can happen in 3 weeks….

our son started driving in driver’s ed…


…no bills were paid while i was gone because i am the one who pays them (insert heavy sign and “uh oh, gotta make some calls today”).  we met some pretty colorful characters while in CA house hunting (a sweetheart neamed “kitten”… a landlord that had police visit during the move in and back up police called to assist (yes, she got her deposit back)… a dj that works nights in clubs but would teach her to surf during the day… two girls that wanted to make triple sure she was 420 friendly… yep, that’s pot, marijuana, and i think i got the numbers correct, they were worried she might be too young for them…  a place that lets their dogs poop inside their house and you walk around it or pick it up yourself…  a person that hadn’t cleaned in months and made my house at home look spotless…  a grandma who was lonely…  a mom who missed her daughters and was renting their rooms out (i wonder if they know)…  a single mom with two kids who might have really just wanted a babysitter…. oh, i could go on.  los angeles.  hollywood.  venice beach.  santa monica.  looked everywhere.

 and every night we came home to our cute little condo… two blocks from the beach… with netflix and wine as my entertainment while she did homework.  loads of homework.

and i landed on the show FIXER UPPER.

chip and Joanna gaines.  quite possible the cutest couple from texas.  with 4 of the cutest kids.  and a decorating style that seems to be a bit of country, modern, hip, sweet and based one each individual client.  i fell in love.  watched every episode.  wanted her wardrobe.  wanted my kids to be young again.  wanted their goats (i had goats as a kid and for some reason i’m missing them now…haha).  just truly enjoyed their story.

a few of the things i wanted are available on their website

jan25magnoliamarket sign

love love love Joanna’s personal style…

jan25magnolia bracelet

leather bracelet.  Joanna wears on the show.  love it. want it. need it.   $66

jan25magnolia beloved necklace

“beloved” necklace.  so sweet and simple.  unfortunately “out of stock”.  made by a local waco, tx artist so i put my name on the “to be notified when it comes back in stock” list.

jan25magnolia destressed leather tote

distressed leather tote.  it comes in a few shapes and sizes.  i’m not picky!  $175 – $350

jan25magnolia tube earrings

metal tube earrings.  i have got to own these. birthday is less than 2 months away.  hint.  $34


love love love the gaines family home style…

jan25magnolia family rules sign

everyone needs a “family rules” sign.  and these seem to be very important rules for our family also. $155

jan25magnolia format pot

it’s apparent i love black and white with pops of color.  these pots are so darn cute.  from $6 ea.

jan25magnolia metal magazine rack

metal wall pockets.  for files.  for magazines.  for whatever.  i like.  i want.  $68

jan25magnolia home sign

and I’ve fallen completely in love with this one. the shiplap sign.  they design a lot of their homes with “shiplap”.  i didn’t even know what that word was until i watched this show.  now i know what many of my waterfront home friends have in their home.  so, if i can’t have a waterfront home right now, i can have some shiplap.  HOME.  the perfect word.  $96

jan25magnolia kids

how cute are their kids?

jan25magnolia chip and joanna

and how cute are they?

i suggest you go to the store now.  get some snacks.  some wine (or if you don’t drink, some milkshake makings).  and settle in for hours of binge watching this show.

you will be glad you did.

happy monday.


thanks for the message Steve Jobs…


we’ve been in CA two weeks. the first week it poured down rain. worse than WA state. the second week we found a roommate for brooke and i met a really cool surfer who appears to be famous (in the surfing world) that inspired me to paint. thanks DJ for the inspiration. your story is sooo cool.


long story short (not going into details) her place was not what we wanted for her.  yep, we are now looking for a different place to live. please do not text, email or call us to ask the details. only reach out if you know of a place.  thank you.

yes, insert heavy sigh.

we have two days to find the perfect place.

so, i’m going to assume God sent me a message this morning with this Steve Jobs quote.

now off we go….

happy monday.



yes, i’m in CA. thank you for asking…


she is why.  our brooke camille.

got her into her new college.  now just searching for the “appropriate” place to live.

it’s unlike like all of our friends’ stories… get kid in college. kid goes straight to dorm on campus that is secure and safe and full of kids their same age.  then join greek system.  just pay bill every month and they graduate in 4 years and everyone is happy.

um, not our path.  not even close.   i wish.

but we’ve got a kid who has already traveled to South Korea at 16, and has now left her safety net of her previous college and lacrosse and friends to get her dental hygienist requirements and to find an agent.  not the easy way.  but the kind of way that we’ve told her will make a great story one day!!

the boys are bacheloring it at home with frozen salisbury steaks, pizza and the occasional salad.  i want to personally thank all of our friends who are pampering them… i owe you!!!  oh, and I forgot… drivers ed started last week.  gotta get a photo of that!! oh boy…

us girls are flying by the seat of our pants with yogurt, fruit, cheese, crackers and lots of starbucks coffee to keep us going.


thanks NOVOGRATZ family for the advice.  David Bowie definitely had some great words to tell.

we are truly on an adventure we will never forget.

right, brookie?

i can’t wait to post some photos that will make you smile.  and laugh.  give me a few days to get her settled.  trust me.  we’ve met some amazingly unique people along the way.

happy tuesday.


an angel and a snowman walked into a bar…

ok, that was supposed to be funny.

but actually an angel and a snowman were painted and went to good homes.


this one went to an angel of a gal.  an amazing mom of 4 and a wife to a man that i used to babysit when i was a kid.  funny how we all grow up into adults.  he is a dentist now.  how does that happen.  anyway, she is an angel to many.  and this fit her perfectly.  wish you could read all of the words, but my photography skills aren’t what they used to be.  i need to get a real camera.  these phone cameras just don’t do artwork justice.  merry Christmas bradie and family.  you are loved.


this one went to a family who decorates their home like nobody else i know.  i love it.  we have been known to secretly rearrange their reindeer in their front yard into inappropriate scenes.  all my husband and sons idea.  haha.  i learned when starting this piece that the husband’s father started the decorating tradition with him when he was a young boy.  and he just lost his father.  when i found this poem on line “Let every day be Christmas…” i knew it had to be the focus.  and it’s so true.  merry Christmas gehring family.  enjoy the holidays with all of your fun décor.

both families have said they want to hang these all year round.

i think i need a piece of Christmas art to hang all year round.  great idea.

happy tuesday.


celebrate with cake…


love this quote.

i actually want to paint it on a canvas for my kitchen some day.

our family loves cake.

don’t quite know when it started but we make lots of cakes.

unless it’s your birthday, you get a donut.

yep.  donut.  not cake.

that’s the way we roll.

december16popcorn canke

brooke comes home tomorrow night.  yay.  yay.  yay.

what a great excuse to make a cake.

i’ve been wanting to make this cake for years.

never do.

but will do now.

she is worth it.

no eggs in the recipe, but… popcorn, marshmallows, butter, m&m’s, pretzels…. hello, does it get any better than this?

i don’t think so.

thanks for the recipe.

I’ll let you know how it turns out.

happy wednesday.


the sweeter side of lemons…

november19lemon cookie

i love lemon.  lemon anything.

sweet lemon cakes, cookies and bars.  savory lemon chicken and fish.

lemon in my sun tea.

lemon in my hair (okay, that was when i was in college.  no more of that.).

i found this yummy site.

and i think she has the same passion for lemon (and food in general) as i do.

go take a peek at her blog.  you will love it.  she’s brilliant.  and you can get the recipe for the photo above on her site.


in honor of “i love lemon” day (self proclaimed, just saying it needed a day of it’s own), i’m sharing a few of my favorite lemon treats below.  recipes only.  photos are on my old phone.  yep, still trying to figure out how to retrieve them.



1 box white cake mis (i like betty crocker)

2 eggs, divided

5 Tblsp. melted butter

1 c. sweetened flaked coconut

8 oz. cream cheese, softened

1 Tblsp. fresh lemon juice (yes, from a real lemon)

3 tsp. finely grated lemon zest

1/2 c. sugar

butter and flour a 9×13 pan.  i like to use the foil, disposable pans.  they cook real even in them.  just a preference of mine.  i’m sure professional bakers would not agree.  hey, i’m just a mom and an artist and an occasional cake baker.  what do i know?

preheat oven to 350.  mix cake mix, 1 of the eggs, butter and coconut together.  it will be crumbly.  reserve 1 c. of the mixture for the topping and set aside.  press remaining dough into prepared pan.  bake for 12 minutes.  remove from oven.  while crust is baking, mix cream cheese and lemon zest.  add lemon juice, sugar and the other egg.  spread over crust.  sprinkle remaining mixture on top.  bake for 25 more minutes or until golden on top.  cool on counter.  refrigerate until ready to serve.  so yummy if you make them the day before your event and they are cold and chewy.  omG… i want one right now!




1 c. flour, 1/2 c. chopped walnuts, 1/2 c. butter, softened, 2 Tblsp. sugar

mix and spread into lightly greased 9×11 pan.  bake at 350 for 10 minutes.  cool completely.


1 c. cool whip, 8 oz. cream cheese, softened

whip together and spread over crust.


2 small packages instant lemon pudding, 2 3/4 c. 2% milk.

mix together on medium speed until thick.  spread over frosting.


1 large container cool whip.

cover the filling with cool whip.  then refrigerate for at least two hours.

ok, here’s the deal… i like to make 2 small ones in 8×8″ pans.  they are thinner but this method is worth it if you want the majority of the cake for yourself….  i keep one (covered in foil) in the back of the refrigerator since nobody in my family looks back there, and the other in the front (covered in clear wrap).  you can use your imagination.  yes, midnight, when all are asleep, sneak to kitchen, eat directly out of your own in the back with a spoon.  ahhhhhhhhhhhh.  you will thank me for this tip.



1 c. butter

2 c. flour

1/2 c. powdered sugar

4 eggs

3 Tblsp. fresh squeezed lemon juice

4 Tblsp. flour

2 c. sugar

2 tsp. lemon rind

1 tsp. baking powder

powdered sugar for dusting on top


preheat oven to 350.  combine butter, flour and 1/2 c. powdered sugar.  mix well.  pat into a 9×13 pan.


while crust is baking, mix together eggs, lemon juice, flour, sugar. lemon rind and baking powder.  as soon as crust comes out of oven, pour mixture over top and return to oven for 25 min longer.


when lemon bars are finished baking, immediately dust with sifted powdered sugar.  cool.  cut into squares.  refrigerate.

special note:  i like mine frozen.  they get sticky, ewey gooey and firm.  a great summer treat!


that’s it.

i’m sure i could share more.

but you guessed it… i have to take my kid to baseball.

happy thursday.


p.s.  if you want more recipes, email me at and request a cookbook.  they are $15 each (plus $4 for shipping).


you’ve got a friend in her…


that was then.

wish i had a photo from birth.  they were each others first visitors.


this is now.

brooke and ally.

friends for life!

You’ve Got A Friend In Me (from the motion picture Toy Story)

By Lyle Lovett, Randy Newman

You’ve got a friend in me
You’ve got a friend in me
When the road looks rough ahead
And you’re miles and miles
From your nice warm bed
You just remember what your old pal said
Boy, you’ve got a friend in me
Yeah, you’ve got a friend in me

You’ve got a friend in me
You’ve got a friend in me
You’ve got troubles, and I’ve got ’em too
There isn’t anything I wouldn’t do for you
We stick together and can see it through
‘Cause you’ve got a friend in me
You’ve got a friend in me

Some other folks might be
A little bit smarter than I am
Bigger and stronger too, maybe
But none of them will ever love you
The way I do, it’s me and you, boy
And as the years go by
Our friendship will never die
You’re gonna see it’s our destiny
You’ve got a friend in me
You’ve got a friend in me
You’ve got a friend in me.

see you in a few weeks girls!!!

happy Wednesday!