Sunday, January 25, 2009

The Frisky Mermaid!

My Latest Florida Panhandle Mermaid!
Introducing the Frisky Mermaid!
I meet so many nice people through my mermaids, that I feel compelled to share the love so to speak. Also, people always enjoy reading about themselves or at least I think so. I know I like to read nice things about myself and especially my family.
A lovely school teacher called me right before Christmas, just as I had closed The Mermaid Shed for the holidays. Well, as you all know, I was a school teacher sooo I could not refuse this last commision. Alicia from the Panhandle wanted a gift for her mother-in-law for Christmas. She described her Mother-in-law in such glowing terms and with such genuine affection that I felt priviledged to paint her. Fun-loving, beautiful, full of life, energetic, delightful, happy, and sporty are the words she used to describe her. I think everyone would like to have or be thought of as that kind of matriarch !
She mentioned that her in-law's beach house was named The Frisky Mermaid. I thought this was rather apt based on the apparent good nature of all involved. It is always so funny how my paintings evolve...thus The Frisky Mermaid was born!
Here we have the original Frisky.... opening her painting.

Alicia was so kind to send me pictures because I love to see people's reactions. The internet is great, but it does have some limitations soooo Thanks Alicia!!

Alicia wrote a lovely ode to her Mother-in -law that I cannot find for the life of me. Sorry! Anyway, I did a little cutting and pasting and we were able to add a little gift with purchase. Haha, don't we all love Buy One Get One? I'm just like the grocery store.

And last but not least...The Frisky Mermaid herself. I hope she will always be a sweet reminder of the love, admiration, and devotion of a sweet daughter-in-law. Thanks again Alicia, the pleasure was truly all mine!

I hope I am so blessed and I really want to be FRISKY!!!

Saturday, January 17, 2009

The Dogs in my Life...a Retrospective

I am a good Southern girl and like most good Southern girls with permissive parents, I had dogs...lots of dogs. My first dog was a Collie, who I reportedly named "Peppy". Apparently, I had a bit of a speech problem and I was trying to say "puppy" and the moniker stuck. Peppy was a good dog who roamed the neighborhood in the days before leash laws, and all sorts of other laws and dangers that have sucked the fun out of childhood. I used to run around my house with Peppy chasing me. Invariably, I was in socks on the hardwood and I always ended up either getting nipped like the girl in the old Coppertone ad or I slipped and hit my head. You know nobody went to the hospital for CAT scans in the 60's, so why I am I so worried about my children??? Were our heads harder back then?
My next dog was part Schnauzer, part Wirehair Terrier. I could recite that on cue at around 6 or 7 years old and I said it with such pride. Why??? I named this puppy too...Bambi...I was so original even then. She had puppies with the toy poodle from across the street...he was quite a player. You know how those Poodles were back in the day...they were all that and they knew it too. This one was white and had those drippy eyes...I was never a poodle fan, but to each his own. I got to pick a puppy and I chose a white one and named it, "Poo Poo" I am assuming and hoping it was a play on the name poodle. I obviously was not being guided by any adults. Poo Poo was... part Schnauzer,part Wire haired Terrier, and part Poodle. I was so proud ha ha! There were also other litters and I cannot seem to remember any others staying around very long. They must have decided that the names that they were bound to be stuck with would limit their prospects so they did not stay long. There was a short lived Irish Setter...probably named Red who ate the sofa and was promptly dispatched to some farm in the country, or so I was told.

The following pictures are of the animals of my adult life. Some have gone to doggie heaven and some are still with me. I reminisced too long and I will have to save them for later.

Thank you for letting me indulge in my trip down memory lane. I would love to hear your animal stories from childhood. I am such a believer that pets enhance our lives and have great healing abilities .

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

My Florida Garden

Welcome to my little slice of Florida!

I do not love the Ocala brick that my house and Mermaid Shed is built with, so if you look in the corner you will see the creeping fig. I have discovered that it loves it here and it can cure a multitude of ills. I am covering everything in this house that I do not like with it. Be Careful if you plant it on the ground around trees because it will quickly climb and overcome the tree. Trust me... do not ask... but it cost me a lot of money!

My new Christmas puppy, Moses, is standing in front of my beautiful Ginger. I was supposed to cover it today because we are supposed to get in the 30s and 40s here over the next few days.... I didn't. These tropicals are really good until it gets in the 40's .

This is in my backyard and I get great joy looking out at it.

I have a viburnum hedge, then I have a combination of spathiphilum (Peace Plant), crotons, and ginger. I used to loathe croton because they are done to death in the Florida landscape, however, I really like them combined here. I think this is a perfect trio, but it will freeze and did I mention that I did NOT COVER THEM TODAY!!! I am going to be so mad at myself if they get burned.

Being from Savannah, I love dogwoods, Magnolias and hydrangeas. I have planted them numerous times and moved them all over my garden and I cannot grow them here. I do have azaleas and a lone Magnolia... they are holding their own, but certainly not flourishing. I keep telling them to bloom where they are planted, but they won't listen.
Here is the thought for the day, Lets all bloom where we are planted!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Meet The California Mermaids!

Mermaids are commonly thought of as mythical sea creatures of the Siren variety. However, a Ticklish Mermaid is something so much more! We are women who support and embrace our friends. We value the wisdom of our elders while retaining the fun of our youth! We know how precious life is and we strive to enjoy our lives and our families. We can find joy in the mundane and we are always friendly and polite. Life is too short to be ugly and we put a high value on creativity and originality. Ticklish Mermaids bring a lot to the table! We are fun, smart, devoted, witty, stylish, sassy, maybe even a little flirty and definitely ticklish!

I would like to introduce Dianne and her California Mermaids and they are definitely of the Ticklish Variety!

My new friend, Dianne , on the right found me on the internet in her search for a gift to honor and delight her friends ...the Mermaids! Here she is with her handsome instructor wearing a Ticklish Mermaid t-shirt she commisioned for Christmas. These beautiful women and handsome instructor below are a part of a swimming group who meet to swim, have fun and support each other. They are an excellent example of what I mean when I talk about being a "ticklish mermaid"! These women are smart, loving, strong, stylish, and clearly have a strong sense of fun! They are truly the embodiment of what my art expresses. I think the t-shirts were a hit and I love the caption that Dianne decided on..."Sea Stumpets...Mermaids Gone Wild!" I painted this after talking with Dianne about her swimming group. She described them as beautiful, fun, culturally diverse, strong and devoted. I was trying to pick a favorite out of these three girls and I really can't. I do think today that I am feeling like the girl in the middle.
Try to figure out which ladies in the two pictures above that I chose to be my models and you might when a prize. (Please excuse this shameless enticement to get you to write me back. )
This is Dianne and her bestfriend, Sandee. They are so blessed to have each other and I am reminded by looking at them what a true and valuable gift a good friend is !!!

Dianne is so sweet that she commissioned "Best Friend" paintings for both of them. I love them both! Below is one of them...the other is floating around in my computer somewhere hiding from me!!! I will be posting more this month on some of the terrific people that I have met through Ticklish Mermaids: and I pay tribute today to Dianne and all of her California Mermaids! Well done ladies for lives being well spent! Thanks Dianne for finding me!