Friday, December 28, 2007

Kitchen Witchery!

For centuries, the kitchen has been the center of the home; a place of warmth and kinship, where visitors are made welcome, laughter is shared and memories are created - a place where we find nourishment for our souls as well as our bodies.

My own kitchen is no exception, and it seems wherever we live, whatever our circumstances, however large or small the house and the rooms, the kitchen is the hub of all the activity - and never moreso than over the holidays! From the simplest no-bake cookie recipe to the most elaborate Dickensian feast, it's always a big part of our celebration.....

Menus this season have included:

Cider baked butternut squash soup with a carmelized onion tart
Vegetarian chili with buttermilk cornbread
Prime rib with Yorkshire pudding and all the trimmings
Spinach and artichoke lasagne with salad and bruschetta

....And admittedly a few leftovers and one night of Chinese take-out. :)

Recipes are chosen from my collection of well over 200 cookbooks (can we say compulsive, lol?) as well as some of the most treasured recipes, hand written on 3x5 cards and tucked in a wooden box. Some of these are over 40 years old, the paper yellowed and the writing faded, but they'e so infused with happy memories and family tradition as to make the preparation feel sacred and magickal.

All of this has served as the inspiration behind the latest piece, painted just yesterday, and shown above - a double recipe box. Yet another I was tempted to keep (it's considerably larger and prettier than mine) but I'm sending it out into the world with the wish that it become a sacred part of someone's own kitchen magick!

Several other Kitchen and Hearth Witch pieces are in the works too, so stay tuned.....

In the meantime, here's that soup recipe. Enjoy.....

Cider Baked Butternut Squash Soup

2 medium sized butternut squash (at least a lb each)
1/2 c. apple cider
2 T olive oil
1 large sweet onion
2 apples (not red delicious) peeled, cored and chopped
2 carrots, chopped
1 large rutebega or turnip, peeled and chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
1 carton vegetable broth
fresh sage
fresh rosemary
1 1/2 c. whole milk or half n half
Salt, pepper and fresh ground nutmeg to taste

Split squash down the middle, remove seeds and place halves (you can cut the long ends into smaller pieces) on large baking sheet. Fill the cavities with apple cider and bake at 450 until done (test with a fork). Cool, remove the squash from the peel and set aside.

In the meantime, in a large heavy bottomed kettle, sautee the onion in the olive oil until translucent, then add the apples, carrots, rutebega, celery, vegetable broth and herbs (about a Tbsp each or to taste). Cover and simmer about an hour or until vegetables are tender. Add the squash (cider included) and heat through.

Puree in batches in a food processor and return to the kettle. Add the milk and salt, pepper and nutmeg to taste, and heat through not quite to boiling. Serve garnished with herb croutons or crusty whole grain bread.

Blessings from my kitchen to yours,
~ Carolee

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Boxing Day!

Sounds like some sort of pugilistic celebration, doesn't it? Or a day for discarding all the Christmas boxes and wrapping?

It's neither, but it is an official holiday in Britain and Canada. Boxing Day originated in medieval times as the day when gifts of money and durable goods were given to the servants and poorer classes (who generally had to work on Christmas Day). In Ireland it's also known as St. Stephen's Day, the feast day for the first Christian martyr, or "Wren Day", whose curious and somewhat gruesome customs I won't detail here (figuring we all know how to google). :)

But for most of us here in the U.S. it's known as "back to work" day, *sigh*....

I say this not for myself, but for my husband, who is as I write this braving turnpike traffic on his way to work. I'm actually looking forward to new projects, with so many ideas spinning around in my head I'll be lucky to complete half of them in 2008!

As we approach the New Year, look for a very large apothecary chest/pantry (absolutely bursting with potions, herbs, spices and accoutrements - and of course, a black cat!), a sign or two, and wicked cool double recipe box. There's also a new clock in the works, so stay tuned.....

In the meantime, I've listed a trio of boxes I'm going to have a very difficult time parting with....but part with them I must, and with all the blessings that inspired them. :)

Right now I'm off to grab a cup of tea and do a bit of knitting. Although the work week has resumed, we're milking the Christmas holidays for all we can around here; thoroughly enjoying Courtney's company of course, but also planning a few more dinners and gift exchanges with family and friends. And one of those gifts - a knitted scarf - is nearing completion, so I'd better get to it.

Many thanks to those who sent us Christmas cards and greetings via snail mail and email, and apologies for not reciprocating. This is the first in many, many years I just didn't pull it together in time to send anything. I'm hoping to catch up on correspondence after the first of the year, but with John's heart surgery looming I'm making no promises or resolutions....

Off to face the day now....And wishing everyone a Happy Boxing Day, or Happy Wednesday, whichever it is for you. :)

~ Carolee

Saturday, December 22, 2007

It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas!

And with Courtney home for the week, it's beginning to feel a lot like Christmas!

After a day spent running last minute errands, and a leisurely Mother Daughter lunch at Olive Garden, we came home and set to work - or I should say Courtney and her friend Lyndy set to work hanging the ornaments as I painted, and I finished by adding the beads and crackers. The hundred or so icicles we usually add remain lost in the attic, and will just have to stay there until next year. I think the tree looks just fine as it is. :)

I'm still knitting madly, with just one alpaca scarf to complete, and fringe to add on a shawl. Tomorrow we'll be baking cookies all day, as a kettle of vegetarian chili simmers on the stovetop, in anticipation of company arriving tomorrow evening.

Christmas Eve will find us doing a bit of last minute wrapping, tidying the house, and settling down for the proverbial long winter's nap before heading out to Midnight Mass - always my favorite part of Christmas.

I'm not sure if time will allow another update here until later in the week, so I'll take this opportunity to convey my deepest appreciation to friends, family and collectors for an incredible 2007. I wish you all a joyous Christmas, a blessed Yule, and a happy, healthy New Year!

~ Carolee

Friday, December 21, 2007

Solstice Blessings!

Wishing all those who observe it a joyous Winter Solstice, and Blessed Yule! Tonight at 10:08 pacific time (1:08 tomorrow morning for those of us here on the east coast} we mark the astronomical first day of winter; the longest night and shortest day of the year, and the re-emergence of the sun. :)

Rather than go on about the history and origin of Solstice observance, and the connection to Christmas (which anyone can google), I thought I'd share some ways to celebrate:

Light candles
Hang mistletoe in thresholds
Decorate with evergreen boughs and pinecones
Fill bird feeders and decorate outdoor trees with edible ornaments
Burn a yule log in your fireplace
Invite friends and family over for an impromptu Solstice celebration
Make donations of food and clothing to those less fortunate
Comtemplate peace and good will.

We'll be doing several of the above here tonight and into tomorrow; hanging the mistletoe and evergreens, lighting candles, and having a midwinter feast with our daughter Courtney, who's due to arrive from North Carolina this evening. I've just started a kettle of homemade cider-baked butternut squash soup, which we'll have with an onion and thyme tart this evening, as we catch up on the past year (far too long to go between visits with one's child!)

Right now I'm off to do a bit of housekeeping and decorating, and will try to post photos this weekend. In the meantime, I wish you all a warm and happy Midwinter's Eve!

~ Carolee

Monday, December 17, 2007


I've been tagged by Kristen of Kristen Beason Designs to list my twenty five favorite movies. In no particular order:

It's a Wonderful Life
Lost in Translation
Lord of the Rings
Stealing Beauty
Practical Magic
Dr Zhivago
Boys on the Side
The Wizard of Oz
The Princess Bride
The Quiet Man
Nightmare Before Christmas
Young Frankenstein
One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest
Harold and Maude
Edward Scissorhands
The Shawshank Redemption
Best in Show
The Commitments
When Harry Met Sally
Wuthering Heights

In turn, I'll tag:


Friday, December 14, 2007

The Snow Queen....

...Has come to life here in the studio (see the sparkling sleigh here, listed on eBay now), and is also scheduled to make a personal appearance in the form of yet another winter storm, due this weekend. We were looking forward to visiting friends down near the city on Sunday, but the forecast is making travel seem more and more unlikely...So it's looking like another weekend of painting, and hopefully - finally - getting the tree up!

It's a very strange holiday season this year, and I'm usually much more on top of things, having completed all the decorating, baking, cards and gifts by now. But I suppose John Lennon was right - life is what happens while we're busy making other plans. Between John's recent health crisis, lots of errands and doctor visits, and repeated problems with the new car (four months ownership and five trips to the dealer for repairs?!), to say I've fallen behind would be an understatement.

But much as we enjoy the trimmings, what will make Christmas special for us this year is that we're together; John is home for the time being (with heart surgery likely after the first), Courtney is arriving next Friday and will spend 8 days here, and we've scheduled visits with family and friends throughout the week.

In the studio, the Witch's pantry I've been promising has been pushed back until after the holidays, but look for a wonderful new knitting box (or mitten box - not sure what I'll call it) to be listed soon, and well as a new Halloween piece. Everything will be on three day auctions until Christmas, in an effort to allow as much shipping time as possible.

Many thanks to all of you who've sent cards and emails with well wishes and inquiries about John, and kind words about my work - you've made a very stressful time much less so, and I love you all. :)

Wishing everyone a happy and blessed season!

~ Carolee

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Tagged Again....

Eeeek! I've been "tagged" again, this time by Chris, for the "MeMe" game - so here goes:

8 things I am passionate about

Animal Rights
Social Justice

8 things I want to do before I die

Live a healthier lifestyle
Have a successful art career
Travel as much as possible
See my grandchildren grow up
Build and live in a "green" home
Learn to play the hammered dulcimer
Work on spirituality
Make a difference

8 Things I say often

I love you
I miss you
Gimme hugs
Do you have to go outside?
Where's your ball?
Who's a good boy/girl?! (Hey, I spend a lot of time at home with the dogs)
Can you believe this idiot?! (reading the news)
I want to move to Canada (also reading the news)

8 books I've read recently

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling
The Business of Bliss, published by Victoria magazine
Winter Solstice by Rosamunde Pilcher
The Father Christmas Letters by J.R.R. Tolkien
The Simple Living Guide by Janet Luhrs
Running With Scissors by Augusten Borroughs
Blackbird House by Alice Hoffman
Knitting for Peace by Betty Christiansen

8 songs I could listen to over and over again

Mercy Mercy Me ~ Marvin Gaye
Power of Two ~ The Indigo Girls
Unchained Melody ~ The Righteous Brothers
Smooth ~ Carlos Sanatana
I Am the Ride ~ Chris Smither
Let it Be ~ The Beatles
Music of the Night ~ Michael Crawford
Georgia ~ Ray Charles

8 things that attract me to my friends

A quick wit
A sense of ethics

8 People who should do this "MeMe"

Okay now, I'm listing them here, but have no idea how to make links and don't have the time to figure it out at this exact moment. If anyone would like to email me privately (please don't instruct me here on my blog) and clue me in, I'd be grateful. In the meantime, you can find these people's links to the right. :)


Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Hearth and Home :)

Each year, as winter weather approaches (snow showers expected today!) I find myself seriously "feathering the nest" - and this year is no exception. Even in the midst of this crazy schedule, thoughts turn to making the home and studio a place of warmth and refuge, a place of comfort, a place of welcome.

Despite the holiday disarray (there are still boxes of decorations strewn about, and more than a few wood pieces stacked up in the living room) there are touches of comfort; afhgans and down lap duvets are thrown over sofa and chairs, spicy scented candles burn, herbal teas are brewed, and meals turn to comfort food. Last night I cooked up a large kettle of homemade vegetarian chili with buttermilk cornbread, and I think the howling wind blowing outside made it taste even better than usual.

Soon the holiday baking will begin, although probably in the evenings this year, as the days will be spent painting the last creations of 2007.

The Witch's Yuletide Pantry and Snow Queen's Sleigh I've been promising are still in the works, as are a few more doggie and kitty welcome signs. Listed now is the piece shown above - one I was sorely tempted to keep - a ceramic pie plate titled "Blessings of the Hearth". I could just see the holiday mince pie coming out of the oven in this one. :)

Wishing everyone all the comfort of your own home and hearth this season!

~ Carolee

Thursday, November 29, 2007

It's That Time of Year Again.....

Time for the usual High Holiday Anxiety to set in, throwing me into a state of utter panic - about pending commissions, about all the holiday themed work I need to complete in the next couple of weeks, about the boxes of decorations strewn around the house waiting for someone who actually has the TIME to turn this place into something approaching festive, about all those handmade gifts in progress.....I need some ELVES, lol!

I'm wishing we had the time to travel elsewhere for the holidays, saving the need for all the decorating, baking, entertaining and such, but with Christmas being John's only remaining day off this year, travel is out of the question. So I suppose I'd better resign myself to some very long days these next few weeks, and try to remember it's like this every year, and it always comes together in the end. :)

In the meantime, I'd better get busy. There's a new Yuletide sign calling my name, and I hope to finish and list it this afternoon.

But if anyone does know where I can find some elves, lol....

Frantic but festively yours,
~ Carolee

Monday, November 26, 2007

Five Random Things

Lori Rudolph, friend and fellow EHAG Halloween artist, tagged me to write five random things about myself. I've seen these posts on others' blogs, so I suppose it was just a matter of time, lol...(and lookout the rest of you, five of you are next, hehe!) So here goes, five Random things:

1. Although most of my work is Halloween and Fantasy, one of my first loves is portraiture, specifically, colored pencil portraits.

2. I knit. Nothing fancy, mostly scarves, shawls, afghans and lately felted purses.

3. Long, long ago, in a galaxy far, far away, in a moment of temporary insanity following a bad break-up, I joined the army for about ten minutes. The experience was pretty similar to that movie "Private Benjamin", but unlike the Goldie Hawn character, I had the good sense to get out. This whole episode generally shocks people who know me to be the total liberal/pacifist type now.

4. I have a serious CD buying jones. I justify my addiction by telling myself it's a business expense (can't work without music). :)

5. I've always wanted to live abroad, specifically a little cottage in the English or Irish countryside, and if I could afford it, probably would.

So - there you go, five random things. In turn, I'm tagging Jen, Chris, John, Lyndy and Melissa.

And please read on - yesterday's post was a heads up on some new work I'll be listing soon, so stay tuned.....

~ Carolee

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Works in Progress!

Life continues at a frantic pace here, with the house in the usual state of holiday disarray, but I'm happy to say there are also several new pieces in varying stages of completion. I'm sooooooooooo excited about this new work, much of it bringing the Halloween theme (witches and black cats and such) into a mystical, wintery realm.

The first piece is the one shown above, listed on eBay now. The photos don't really show how it sparkles (LOVE that vintage glass glitter), but it's received several "oooohs" and "aaaah's" from visitors to the house. :)

Yesterday found me not decorating the tree as planned, but painting the last ceramic piece to be offered this year - a witchy pie plate, with words of blessing written around the edge; the perfect gift for the kitchen witch. :) Other new work includes a very large apothecary/pantry, which is also shaping up with a wintery yule theme - jars of assorted herbs and spices, magickal oils and elixirs, the Witch's books and grimoire, mortar and pestle, copper kettle, and of course, the requisite cat (or three, hehe)....

Then there's the Snow Queen's SLEIGH! Wait until you see this one....again, a very large piece, suitable for center stage almost anywhere in the house and large enough to hold your favorite Christmas dolls, several gifts, or even the largest card collection. This piece is in the sketching stages right now, so will take a bit to complete, but when it's finished it will be accented with vintage glass glitter and Swarovski crystals. Quite the showpiece. :)

I'm also trying to keep up with the many requests pouring in for new doggie and kitty welcome signs....

All of this, the holiday housecleaning and decorating, the baking and the knitting (another homemade Christmas for us this year!) will keep me busy until the wee hours for the next several weeks.

Throughout all of this, John is doing well, and making his way through the rounds of doctors, specialists and tests, in anticipation of the eventual surgery which will correct his heart problem. We're not expecting it to happen until early 2008, a blessing, as he'll certainly enjoy the season, and Courtney's visit more fully at home.

And as for next year, well - "sufficient unto the day", and all that....

For NOW, we're counting today's blessings. :)

Thursday, November 22, 2007

A Happy and Blessed Thanksgiving

It's hard for me to believe Thanksgiving is upon us already....the day we take a moment to pause and reflect on those things for which we are truly grateful.

Life's been a bit of a whirlwind lately, and certainly not without challenges, but sometimes it's those challenges that remind us how truly blessed we are. I once read somewhere that being thankful for the good things is easy, but to live a life of true fulfillment we need to be thankful for the setbacks as well. I love that, and believe it to be true. It's the challenges in our lives that build character - helping us to grow, to learn, and to move forward.

I'm thankful for so many things this year; for the best husband anyone could ask for, and for the life we've built together. For our beautiful and talented daughter (we're so proud kiddo, and love you to the moon and back). For our home; modest to be sure, but warm and comfortable and ours. For our menagerie; Cadie, Cosmo, Cheetah, Merlin and Arthur, and what they teach us every day about unconditional love. For our health, and for the medical advancements and treatments that give us hope. For friends. For family. For grace.

We'll be spending the day quietly here, no big feast or anything. With only one carnivore in the house (no, not me), a turkey dinner isn't practical, and although we received a tempting invitation to dine with friends and family, the drive would have a bit much for John on a day he can spend resting. I'll probably do a bit of painting this afternoon, and we'll watch a movie later this evening - all in all a good day, and another one spent together, which is reason enough for gratitude. :)

Again, many thanks for all the positive thoughts and prayers....

Wishing everyone a Happy and Blessed Thanksgiving!

Much Love,
~ Carolee

Friday, November 16, 2007

'Tis the Season

Although things have been a bit crazed since John's hospital stay (and are likely to remain that way for awhile as he goes through the requisite tests and consultations for probable heart surgery) time marches on, and the holiday season is fast approaching.....

We'll spend a quiet Thanksgiving, just the two of us, and the day after I hope to get the tree up! This is always quite the project, with literally hundreds of ornaments and icicles. We'll drink hot cocoa, listen to Christmas music, and reminisce as we unwrap treasured decorations from years past; the ornament Courtney made in kindergarten, the musical silver bell my grandmother gave me, the Christmas photos to be placed in the antique frames atop the piano, the stockings we'll hang over the dining room hearth...The same items every year, but unwrapping them never fails to give me the warm fuzzies. :)

Courtney will be home for Christmas too - the best possible medicine for John, and we're both sooooooo looking forward to spending some time with her. A year between visits with your child is just far too long.

Work in the studio is moving into Holiday mode too, with a combination of pieces both wicked and whimsical, and also a few welcome signs featuring different breeds of dogs and cats. I paint a few of these every year, and they're always such fun! I only wish I had time to paint all the requests I'm getting, but I need to save time for Halloween art too (never too early to start thinking about NEXT Halloween, hehe)...

So stay tuned, and please keep checking, as I expect to be listing new items every few days. In fact, look for a VERY detailed Witch's apothecary/pantry piece next week, and a wintery "mitten box" soon to follow!

Wishing everyone a happy and blessed holiday season....

~ Carolee

Monday, November 12, 2007

Veterans Day

Since today is the Day we celebrate Veterans Day here in the US, and with Christmas fast approaching, I have to share this video. The artist is folk singer John McCutcheon, and the subject is the Christmas Truce of 1914. I'm not sure if this will appear as a link, or if you'll have to cut and paste. It's about six minutes long, but well worth the watch:

Saturday, November 10, 2007


I've been thinking a lot lately about the blessings in my life, and about the grace we receive in the face of challenges.

There are, of course, those blessings I'm conscious of on a daily basis; my marriage, our beautiful daughter, whatever degree of artistic ability I have, and my general satisfaction with the path I've chosen.

But then there are the unexpected blessings....

While several people I thought would have responded to the messages and updates about John's health crisis have not, there have been so many less "close" to us who have been a real source of strength - calling, sending emails and messages offering help both emotional and practical, and making it much easier to face the challenges that lie ahead. Just when I begin to feel tired or discouraged, strength and inspiration arrives from the most unexpected of sources, and I'm able to move forward.

I know also that these blessings are a manifestation of divine grace. That God, or Goddess, or Universe, or whatever you want to call it, has a hand in weaving the tapestry of our lives, and will continue to do so as we face whatever lies ahead.

So in this season of blessings we remain grateful for all of it, even the challenges. And we thank those of you who've been there for us in person and in spirit. Your thoughts, prayers and encouragement are a constant inspiration as we look forward to brighter days ahead. :)

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Home Again....for a bit :)

Just wanted to share the latest - John came home today, at least for a little while....But after another more sophisticated test on Thursday, and follow ups with the cardiologist, pulmonologist, and surgeon, he'll need to return to the hospital for open heart surgery to replace his damaged mitral valve.

Scary stuff, but the alternative (eventual heart failure) is even scarier. And we're SO grateful for the technology and skill that makes this kind of fix possible (it wasn't all that long ago this kind of thing would have been science fiction!)

At any rate, I'm happy to have him home, and he's happy to BE home, and that's enough for now. :)

Work in the studio is continuing, with more Halloween and witchy art coming SOON (Look for a new and VERY large Yule pantry next week!) In the meantime, I've returned to my eBay roots with a few wintery welcome signs featuring dogs and cats (to be listed tomorrow).

Finally, many, many thank for all the messages and emails, the prayers, and the positive, healing thoughts sent our way. It's truly a blessing to be part of such a thoughtful and caring community of friends. :)

~ Carolee

Monday, November 5, 2007

Quick Update

Thanks very much to everyone who's commented and emailed. The cardiac cath dept. at our local hospital is "down" today (some kind of computer thing from what I gather) so they've postponed John's test until tomorrow....We're finding that "hurry up and wait" is standard operating procedure, but everyone has been so nice we really can't complain. John is comfortable, if a bit frustrated with everything still up in the air.

We should know more tomorrow. In the meantime, he's breathing easier and they've managed to slow his heart rate - a good thing. :)

~ Carolee

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Hanging In There

Just a quick update...... I'm still dividing my time between home and the hospital, and will likely be at the hospital most of the day tomorrow - more tests, which will determine if John will need heart surgery.

Apologies again if I'm neglecting emails - I will get to them, but things are still a bit frantic around here at the moment. Oh, and shipping is going out tomorrow via priority mail. :)

Thanks so much for your thoughts and prayers. They mean a lot.

~ Carolee

Friday, November 2, 2007


Emails will be limited, and shipping on hold for a few days. John (my other half for almost 30 years now) is in the IMCU of our local hospital with what they suspect is some kind of lung problem, so my time at home and on the computer will be limited until we know what's going on. Prayers and good thoughts are appreciated. Thanks so much... ~ Carolee

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

And the Award for Best Costume.....

...goes to Cosmo, one of our two Aussies. Sorry, Cosmo, but this is what happens when you don't have little ones to dress up for Halloween anymore, lol....

Happy Halloween!!

It's finally here.....the magickal day when childhood is re-lived - and the day that for many of us inspires a whole year's worth of wicked and whimsical art!

We broke down last night and bought a few extra bags of candy, the theory being that too much is better than too little (although probably not for my already goddess size figure, hehe!) Can't wait to see all the little kiddos out in their costumes tonight....

Yes, I said TONIGHT! For unlike some of the towns around here, and some years in this town, "trick or treat night" is actually on Halloween this year! I'm not sure exactly when it became OK for local government to change an age old tradition for the sake of convenience, but I have to say I think it's pretty bogus. Halloween is Halloween, and it's rightfully celebrated on October 31st. When you change that, you take away some of the magic. So what if the kids are up a little later? So what if homework suffers for one night? So what if the grown-ups have to deal with costumes and pumpkin carving mid-week? It's HALLOWEEN!

OK, stepping down now, hehe....

I'll be spending the day here painting of course - a new cat and mouse treasure box and a bowl or two, to be listed on eBay either today or tomorrow. And I'm seriously considering baking another batch of "puffins" - noooooooo, not the birds - pumpkin muffins! With chocolate chips and almonds. Yum. :)

One little side note before I go - to everyone with an aol address, all the emails I sent to aol yesterday came back. Not sure if it's a glitch with aol, or with my server, but there it is, and I'll try again this afternoon.

Off to the studio now.....Wishing everyone a Happy and *Magickal* Halloween and a Blessed Samhain!

~ Carolee

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

One More Day!

Well, tomorrow is the big day, and as usual I'm wondering if we have enough candy to last the night?! This is a guessing game I play each year, trying to estimate just the right amount; enough to be generous, but not so much that we have leftovers - (which I may as well apply directly to my hips, hehe!)

As you can see from the photo of our little street, we live downtown, where there are plenty of houses in very close proximity - so we generally count on well over a hundred visitors! John and I will take turns sitting outside, dispensing goodies, and when the evening is over we'll have a late supper and either read, or watch scary movies.

And the following day, it's time to start thinking about NEXT Halloween, teehee!

I've found the best way to combat the post Halloween letdown is to dive right into creating another wicked piece, and there are plenty of sketches still on the drawing board, plenty of scribbled notes, and plenty of ideas spinning around in my head - so stay tuned. :)

Speaking of new pieces, there's one calling my name now, which I hope to list later today; a bit of a departure for me, this one is based on one of my favorite books, Richard Adams' "Watership Down" - but with a celestial, holiday twist..... So with scented candles burning, a little Van Morrison in the CD player, and a cup of my favorite brew (Wild West tea from the Montana Tea and Spice Company this morning) I'm off to face the day.....

Wishing everyone a Happy and CREATIVE day before Halloween!!

Artful Blessings,
~ Carolee

Friday, October 26, 2007


This has been a week of changes....comings and goings, old work and new, friendship and loss...even the weather seems to finally be in transition; in short, the natural order of things, moving in cycles like the seasons.....

It's a bit late for autumn weather to arrive, but it's finally here in the form of several days chilly rain, and I'm loving it! We're fortunate to have both a tin roof and a skylight in this old house, so I've been spending my days listening to the constant patter of raindrops. This morning the new Joni Mitchell CD is the player and I'm burning a spicy orange scented candle, drinking my morning tea and getting ready to face the day. It will be a busy one, as I plan to finish a Halloween mailing and work a bit on two custom signs.

I also managed to list the very first "crossover" piece of the season (a winter candle box, shown above), after waiting a very frustrating six hours for eBay to actually bring up the listing. Additional photos and description can be found by clicking on the link to my eBay auctions. :)

The vintage glass glitter I used on this piece is SO fun, and I can't wait to try it out on some holiday ornaments!

Off to face the day now. Wishing everyone a happy and *CREATIVE* weekend!

Artful Blessings,
~ Carolee

Monday, October 22, 2007

Back from the Wilds

Good morning, all!

I've just returned from another weekend with the Cabin Ladies, and am feeling completely refreshed, and ready to dive right back into commission and eBay work. :)

For anyone not familiar, I get together with a group of women friends several times a year and we rent a cabin in a beautiful wooded setting for a long weekend of relaxation - no kids, no husbands, no t.v., no computers or phones, just good friends, good food, good wine, and good conversation; we read, play board games, knit, cook, chat, and take the occasional day trip to nearby points of interest. This is definitely not roughing it though. The cabins are fully furnished, have hot and cold running water, and over the years our supply of provisions has grown to include things like wine glasses, a coffeemaker, a large selection of cookware and utensils, even an extra towel rack. My kinda camping, lol.

I'll be dividing my time this week between commissions, eBay offerings and a last minute Halloween mailing. I'm also hoping to add some bells and whistles to the blog here, and get the ball rolling for a quarterly newsletter.

As usual, I hardly know where to start - more ideas spinning around in my head than time to paint them, and this is the time of year inspiration leans to kitchen and yule witches, Christmas ghosts and faeries, and magickal black cats. I've also just recently purchased some "diamond dust" - gorgeous clear, German glass glitter I can't wait to try on a few holiday pieces. So stay tuned....

In the meantime, it's very nearly HALLOWEEN, and I can't wait!! Pumkins, parties, and parades of trick-or-treaters! Living downtown as we do, there's a pretty constant barrage of costumed children. I bought something like 15 bags of candy last year and had to run out for more - now THAT'S scary, lol! to make a cup of tea and face the day now..... Wishing everyone a happy and *CREATIVE* week!

Artful Blessings,
~ Carolee

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Greetings from my new home at blogspot!

I'll still be posting to my eBay and myspace blogs, but am hoping this will evolve into the new and "official" King of Mice Studios website blog. The old version was a nightmare to update, requiring an email to my webperson, and a sometimes lengthy wait before it posted (can you tell I'm technically challenged?!)

At any rate, I'm still finding my way around this, and need to figure out how to post photos and such, but I'm told it's reasonably easy to figure out...Then again, we're talking about totally right brained ME, so we'll see.....

The website is also in the process of being updated, albeit in baby steps as I can afford them. New links were recently added, this blog of course, and the NEXT step will be a gallery update, so stay tuned. :)

And wish me luck!

~ Carolee