Monday, July 19, 2010

Cool Blues and Raspberry Lemonade

“Mmmmm! This raspberry lemonade is so cool and so delicious! Just perfect for these hot days we’ve been having,” sighed Sally, as we sat in my air-conditioned family room.

“I like it, too,” I replied. “Remind me to give you the recipe later.”

“What else have you been doing to keep cool?” Sally asked.

“Well,” I laughed, “When we are really lucky and have one of those blue, blue skies, and non-humid days, I venture outside and sit on the front porch and just bask in the glories of Mother Nature, and especially enjoy the blue sky and green of the earth.”

“Those days haven’t been coming along too often,” Sally reminded me. “So, what else do you do?”

“I’m so glad you asked,” I smiled. “You will enjoy this, too…..simply looking at some of the blue creations from the Boomers and Beyond team.”

“Oh,” said Sally, “You know how much I love that. Let’s do that now,” she continued.

“Okay, and bring your lemonade,” I said.

“Don’t forget to give me the recipe,” Sally reminded.

“Don’t worry. Right after we finish drooling over all these wonderful blues from the Bbest team.”

zudagay dahlia

YankeeGirl beach watercolor

stitchesbyjulie poncho

sassalynne yarn


heronkate blue lily

jnoriginals coasters


Whimseys pleatedshoulderbag

sixsisters butterfly


mysticsilks painting

glitznglass earrings

Jills Treasurechest bell

getlathered soap


chris1 pendant

jstinson earrings patriotic

eversodear bracelet


BytheBy sundress

bookwraps jeans

birose wrist pincushion

attackofthevintage belt

blazingneedles coasters

claycenter earrings

diane clancy

gimmebeads earrings


chauncey pendant

“Fabulous!” exclaimed Sally. “Those Boomers never cease to amaze me with their talents.”

“Me, too,” I sighed. “Me, too! How about some more raspberry lemonade,” I asked.

“Can’t wait,” Sally replied. “And don’t forget that recipe!”

Raspberry Lemonade

3/4 cup fresh or frozen raspberries

9 cups water

2 cups freshly squeezed lemon juice (about 12 lemons)

2 cups sugar

Puree raspberries in blender, and strain liquid through fine sieve to remove seeds.

Put sugar into two cups of water, boil until sugar is dissolved (simple syrup). Cool mixture.

Put 7 cups water into a pitcher, add lemon juice, raspberry juice, and cooled simple syrup. Mix, pour into ice-filled glasses. Enjoy!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

What's Your Muse?

In the middle of summer, what sparks your creativity? What lights the passion within you to make or design something new? I decided to ask that question today because I am working on answering it for myself. I keep hearing about the importance of working now on items for the holiday season ahead -- but it's really hard sometimes to think about creating for Christmas or Hanukkah when its 90 degrees outside!

I currently have 22 books home -- borrowed from my local library, hoping that one of them will invite the muse to visit. Is that what you do? I've been in and out of the fabric store, the hobby store, and browsing the magazine aisle in the grocery store. I think about taking a class in the local knitting shop while visiting there, but the materials fees on top of the class fee sounds pretty steep. Yet, I longingly look just a little longer while fingering the new yarn arrivals.

Sometimes I sit in my studio and doodle -- or stare into the closet at drawers filled with every color and shade of fabric, hoping they will speak to me. But, one of my favorite places to feel the muse whisper is in seeing the wonderful creations of my fellow artists and teammates. Seeing others at work on some new project, or hearing about a class they are taking lights just a little fire in me and sets me working on a hot summer's day. I love the fantasy SixSisters brings to her watercolor fairies (above). Maybe my muse hides there!

Perhaps I will discover the inspiration in JillsTreasureChest. I have seen fairies hiding there among her amazing ceramic pieces.

Ah, but then maybe it isn't in fantasy I will discover my inspiration, but from nature. BethPeardonProds photos invite the eye to look deeper into the spirit of what she has captured!

Or should I sit in the garden of all the lovely flower paintings in  PFDOriginalArtworks shop? Her work is very inspirational!
Or could it be the inspiration will come from supplies waiting for my fingers to caress? SassaLynne has some amazing hand-dyed threads that beckon!

TheKnottySheep has some gorgeous new hand spun yarns inviting my fingers to make something fun!

But, the inspiration in the supplies category doesn't stop there. Just look at the buttons to be discovered in BizzieBeeButtons shop!

Ah, well, I get stuck there on occasion -- because my little crow's nest studio has supplies galore, but I still don't seem to find the inspiration to start the spark on how to use them. Maybe I what I really need is Artmixer's great book Finding Your Creative Focus!

If you have other ideas on how to stimulate creating in the summer heat -- I would love to hear them in your comments. And do visit these great Bbest Team shops where others have already been inspired to create!