Sunday, December 4, 2016

♥ Hygge ~ A Holiday Open Housewarming ♥

It's been about four months since the big move to smaller quarters, and we're settling in despite waves of missing John terribly. He would have liked this little cottage, and I think he'd be pleased with the idea of all our friends gathering here to infuse the place with warmth and good cheer as winter approaches.

 The housewarming is aptly titled "Hygge" (pronounced "hue-geh") the Danish word, which (while there is really no direct English definition that does it justice), loosely translates to the concept of coziness and camaraderie; the sense of feeling connected, and of taking pleasure and appreciating the everyday things that stir our senses and warm our hearts. The best description I've found so far is here.

So the little retro kitchen will be busy over the next couple of weeks, as cookies are baked and soups are set to simmer, narrowing down the buffet style menu (which so far consists of both cocktail meatballs and vegetarian meatballs, a pasta salad or two, buffalo chicken dip with baguettes, a pomegranate salsa with chips, and assorted cookies and sweets)...

Unfortunately, the piano hasn't been tuned since the move, but I do hope we can find a guitarist or two among the guests, and maybe even sing a few carols (Christmas carols = instant hygge). ;)

So many friends are scattered far, far away, and geography prevents them from attending, but I know they'll be here in spirit, and perhaps even visit one day. And those who are here - I look forward to seeing you!

In the meantime, I'm holding everyone close in my heart, and wishing you all a season filled with all this warmth and friendship and hygge, and joy in simple pleasures wherever you find them.

Love and light,
♥ Carolee

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

My New Front Door...

This is what happens when an artist buys a new cottage...

Next up: the dining room table and a piano bench.

Stay tuned. ;)

♥ Carolee

Saturday, July 30, 2016



You've won my little giveaway. :)

I'll look forward to hearing from you, and in the meantime, anyone who'd like to participate in future giveaways, please visit and follow my Facebook page...

Back very soon!

♥ Carolee

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Sometimes a Little Madness and a Little Giveaway...

....And a tumble down the Rabbit Hole...

 Is exactly what one needs to make the world not so topsy-turvy anymore. ♥

Do come in, and grab a cup of your favorite brew (mine is currently this lovely lemon chiffon!)...

And choose one of these yummy cookies (actually a birthday surprise a while back from a very special friend and Alice collector!) This picture, and her thoughtfulness always make me smile. :)

To be honest, my world has been turned completely upside down recently, and in the most devastating way, so I'm afraid I haven't had time for really proper tea party preparations. But with the help of my friends, both real-life and online, I'm picking up the pieces and forging ahead with a new chapter...

In the midst of all these changes, I'm back in the studio, and working on - what else? - a new Alice inspired piece...

(A hint - there will be a very LARGE White Rabbit involved.)


I'm sorry this is so short, and probably less than super imaginative....But I thank you ever so much for visiting, and if you leave a comment, I will draw a name in a few days (say next Saturday?) and the winner can choose their favorite print from my Etsy shop. I think Alice tumbling down the Rabbit Hole may even be there, but you can have your pick!

Much love, and Happy Tea Partying...

~ Carolee

Saturday, July 2, 2016

It's That Time Again...

Vanessa Valencia's Mad Tea Party. :)

As it happens, I'll be in the middle of a move, but I'm sure I can pull a piece of Wonderland Art out of my hat, perhaps even have a little giveaway. ;)

Stay tuned...

♥ Carolee

Saturday, April 2, 2016


To say that March was a difficult month would be an understatement.

I lost the love of my life, and am slowly learning how to navigate a world without him. We both knew this day was coming, but even after the accident last fall, when his health became so immediately fragile (he had some broken vertabrae in his back which made it even harder to take any kind of a deep breath), we somehow always thought his passing was something in the future. He was here TODAY, and we clung to that. Even when he began in-home Hospice Care, we were optimistic that he would be one of those people who defied the odds. I mean, he always HAD before, so we thought he would just keep going. We joked about the Energizer Bunny, and how thankful we were that he just kept going and going.

Until he didn't.

I was with him when he passed, holding his hand, telling him how much he was loved. I like to think he heard me, but the nurses assured me he was thoroughly sedated - something we insisted on, so he would not feel pain or panic. But whether he heard my last words to him or not, I have no doubt he knew, because we said those words to each other pretty much every day of our marriage and meant them, even when it was a challenge.

And now it's just me, without someone to consult about important decisions, without someone to bounce ideas off, without someone to hold and care literal other half. I remember saying to him once that I would not even know how to be ME, without HIM. He thought it was a silly statement, but it's true. A part of me went with him.

In the midst of all this, there are some very important decisions to be made. Both space and financial considerations mean a move, and sooner rather than later. A house? A condo? And where? I'm strongly leaning toward staying here in Lancaster County, where I have a strong support system, and am only a train ride away from our daughter Courtney. But I'm also dreaming a bit about the mountains of western North Carolina, where John and I always dreamed of living or retiring.

There's also much work to be done...more paperwork and legal details than I'd ever imagined, and of course, painting awaits at the studio table, and a now desperately overdue commission schedule. I must get back to it, and soon...and trust that as ever, Art Heals.

I would also like to thank everyone who has offered up prayers, all those who attended his funeral Mass, and Celebration of Life earlier in the week, and the many, many kind comments, messages, cards, and very practical gifts of help I've received. I'm overwhelmed, truly, and so grateful for each of you in my life.

There will be some major changes happening, and I will miss him terribly every day of my life. But I'll find my footing, and take comfort in the knowledge he's no longer struggling, and that I will see him again someday. It's all I can do.

Besides, if I fell apart, he'd be the first to come back and tell me to snap out of it. ;)

Much Love,
♥ Carolee

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

My Heart...

...Is broken beyond repair.

 It will never be whole again, and I'm not sure I would ever want it to be so anyway. In deep grief there is memory, and I never want to be parted from that.

This is about all I can bear to write now.

He was a good, good man, and I will miss him fiercely all the days of my life.

Friday, January 8, 2016


Painted in memory of my big, beautiful, and much beloved Arthur, who crossed the bridge a few months ago, this gorgeous ginger tabby cat is looking up with great anticipation...

Painted in acrylic, on a deep gallery canvas (no need to frame!), and finished with a clear, acrylic varnish, this original is available in the Etsy shop.

I'm hoping he finds a good home. :)

In the meantime, there's more painting to be done, and I'd best get started....

Thanks for stopping by, and I'll be back soon with more studio goings-on, and new work to share...


Artful Blessings,

♥ Carolee

Friday, January 1, 2016

Intentions, Simplicity, and a Whole New Year

Favoring intentions over resolutions, I have to say I find the idea of choosing a particular word for the year ahead to be pretty appealing. Or rather, letting that word choose you.

Since 2015 was not without challenges - many of them complicated by a crazy schedule, an abundance of responsibilities, and far too much STUFF, my word - and my intention - for 2016 is

Easier said than done, I know, especially for someone who feels she needs to do All Of Everything. 

As some of you know, my husband (a.k.a. The Mice President) has been facing enormous health and physical challenges, and our old two story house has become pretty close to unmanageable. Add my orthopedic issues to the mix, and there's no way around it - we need to move to a single story dwelling ASAP. 

Which means a serious purging of possessions; books, decorative items, kitchen things (how do TWO people end up with thirty-some coffee mugs?) CDs (STILL need to download our collection to the ipod I was generously gifted) and stacks and stacks of old magazines and paperwork...




In the studio, a little organization needs to happen. Nothing over the top. I'll never be one of those artists you see in the magazines with an immaculate work space (you know, because it's a WORK space, hehe). But some files and bins wouldn't be a bad idea. Just sayin'. ;)


In the scheduling department, I seriously need to learn to say no to too many commissions. November and December were absolutely insane, because I accepted far too many ornament orders, and found myself doing nothing BUT ornament orders all season. Much as I love painting these, I need to paint other things too. So this year there will be a cap of 20 or 30, deposits will be taken early, and they'll be painted over the summer instead of in the midst of the holiday season.


I've also decided that one monthly marketplace deadline is enough, and that will be the EHAG Emporium, updated on the last day of each month.


And shipping will happen twice a week - once at UPS, and once at the post office.



Finally, social media. I'm happy to say I've already made considerable strides in letting go of things which upset me, "hiding", "unfollowing" people and sites who post anything negative or mean spirited. What a relief it's been to watch my Facebook feed slowly turning more positive and uplifting - filled with ART, animals, uplifting quotes and happy milestones instead of attention seeking posts and angry rants. Much of this has been preemptive, as the election approaches....I can handle differences of opinion (and actually find healthy, intelligent debate interesting) - but I draw the line at hate speech and finger pointing, and frankly, my blood pressure is high enough, lol.


My new mantra. ;)


Makes me feel a bit lighter already. 

I know that 2016 will have its own challenges, but by paring down to what's REALLY important - both materially and intangibly, they'll be easier to face and hopefully overcome.

I should add that while "Simplify" is the word I chose for this year, "Gratitude" is right up there too. I feel sooooooo beyond fortunate to spend my days doing something I love, and owe an ENORMOUS debt of thanks to everyone who collects and supports my work. Because of you I am able to follow a creative path - to actually make art for a living and send it out into the world! How amazing is that? So thank you from the bottom of my heart. I am truly blessed.


Here's to the most creative 2016 possible!


Much love,

¸.•´¸.•*¨) ¸.•*¨)
(¸.•´ (¸.•´ .•´ ¸¸.•¨¯`• ♥ Carolee