Tuesday, March 31, 2009

April in Paris...Happy Birthday Tour Eiffel

You might think I am a day early, but according to my Paris clock (I have several clocks set to Paris time throughout the house, on the computer, and at work, so I know what time it is for Megan), it is now April in Paris!

I've been in Paris twice in April, and both times it was very cold, rainy, and last year we even got caught in a ferocious hail storm at the end of April!

But I am wishing for a beautiful April in Paris this year, so Megan can experience the stuff of legends!

I just read on my new blog friend Andi's twitter page that today (yesterday?) is the 120th birthday of the Eiffel Tower. So I thought I would share a couple of recent pictures of her majesty. I literally have hundreds of pictures to choose from, some even available only in print form from my first trip to Paris in 1984 or so.

This first one was actually taken by Lynda and Merle on their recent same-time-as-me trip to visit the girls for spring break.

This next masterpiece was taken by yours truly just a little over a week ago, and is currently my home computer desktop background. A couple of warm days really brought out the flowering trees!
We were walking from the American Library back to the metro, and Megan promised we could walk through Champ de Mars if I was good. When I saw this tree in bloom, I took off at a hard run to snap a few pictures...that falls within being good, doesn't it??

And although this may not be the best picture, it means so much to me...I will never regret going out late on my last night in Paris, in the rain and wind, to see the twinkling lights one last time.

And so, my tribute to April in Paris...the picture is actually from a postcard I bought in Montemarte, the rest just pieces from a growing ephemera collection.

ACEO "April in Paris", Diane Weber, 2 1/2" x 3 1/2"

Monday, March 30, 2009

Morning Light

I am no photographer, but I've mentioned how I love to take pictures. I guess one reason is because it enables me to test and record my observational abilities.

When I looked out in the back yard this morning and saw the rising sun shining on a sliver of the garden, lighting up the red maple (which will not look this good after the warm weather of summer ravages the tender leaves), the newly blooming jasmine, the copper train wind vane and anemometer, the weathered bench, the newly greening hydrangea in the back corner, I ran for my camera...

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Light at the End of the Tunnel

I actually mean this literally.

We spent part of the day riding a steam train in Sunol and Niles Canyon. I don't know anything about trains, and thought I cared even less (although I have no objection to spending time outdoors on a nice day with my favorite husband).

But after the ride was over, I stared at the monstrous thing for a while, and could not help but admire the beauty and engineering marvel, and yes, the artistry of it!

For no engineering reason is there such beautiful typography:

And the wheels would turn without the little stars in the center:

And oh how brightly would shine this light at the end of the tunnel!

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Rock Gardening

The weather in March is usually quite nice here in Northern California, although it can still rain. But the last two days have brought exceptional weather, with temperatures into the high 70's, causing things to bloom in fast-motion! The summer jasmine is filling the air with perfume while the daffodils and freesias are still in their prime.

No longer fearful of rain or frost, the boys have taken up summer residence in the sunshine of the rose bed.

My blogging friend Deb was kind enough to bestow upon me an award:

Does she know that despite the fact I hardly ever work in paint, I really do have a passion for painting? I just don't do it cause I'm not very good at it.

But I did in fact do some painting today. It was time to get the front garden bed in shape, and the rocks needed a bit of a face lift. I call it "Rock Gardening".

Friday, March 27, 2009

Plus des Coeurs

I guess it was a good idea to paint like 8 or so backgrounds while I had the paints out. Here is another ACEO based on hearts, this one a set of hearts stamped with red acrylic paint on muslin. I stitched these onto a paper background with gold metallic thread, then added a few elements, including the new lace trim acquired in Paris, painted gold.

ACEO Heart of Gold, Diane Weber, 2 1/2" x 3 1/2"

Thursday, March 26, 2009

More Hearts

Before I left for Paris, I finished up another of the prototypes for my 9 of Hearts. This one is also a hand-painted background, with hand-stamped hearts and an overstamp of a couple of "Je t'aime"s, free-motion stitched, and embellished with crystals.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Last Tango in Paris

It's getting close to the time, time to say goodbye to Paris once again, which is hard enough, but along with that, time to say "a bientot" to my baby girl.

And with so many things to do and see and so many places to go, I wonder if this will be my "last tango in Paris"...

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Taking Time...

It's not that I have not been writing, I've just been doing it elsewhere. I've filled Facebook and Shutterfly with hundreds of pictures over the last week, recording all the special sights and moments of this wonderful trip.

Paris & Bruges Pictures

Through it all, my message is clear..."Take the time to stop and smell the roses"...

Monday, March 16, 2009

Living Large

Imagine if, this is where you catch the metro...

this is where you go to work...

and this is where you go to church...

Don't ever forget to look up, observe the largess, drink in the blue sky, and stop and smell the roses!

Oh, and be sure to peek into every window, you never know what you might find!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Favorite Things, New Contexts

Wouldn't it be fun to...

do word searches here (I picture a ladder, a giant magic marker, and being exhausted at the end of the day :-)

have a steampunk door (put the key in the lock and have all the gears start moving and turning to open the door - coming and going would be such fun!)

Have an address like this... (have to admire French school children who master spelling - how much easier is 'old' than 'vieille'??)

Encounter aliens every day...

Is it any wonder I feel at home in Paris :-)

Saturday, March 14, 2009

First Encounters

Sometimes, words just aren't needed...even without many words I will remember special moments, first encounters or re-encounters, strong impressions...

Friday, March 13, 2009

On y va!

When in doubt as to what to snap, I take pictures of my feet :-) Whenever I look back at these feet and shoe pictures, I always remember immediately where I was and what I was doing. Feet pictures do that for me :-)

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Artist Choice Awards

Music may have the Grammy's, TV the Emmy's, movies the Oscars, the web has the Webbies, and on eBay, there are the Artist Choice Awards, or ACA. These are peer-nominated and peer-chosen awards for those artists, like myself, who sell their work (and their souls??) on eBay.

I am thrilled, and even find it a bit incredulous, to not only have been nominated for the 2nd year in a row, but to have won 1st Place this year in the Fiber Art/Textiles category.

Last year I was also honored with a nomination and achieved 3rd place.

As the Jeffersons would say..."Moving on up..." :-)

A huge thank you to whoever among my peers had the kindness and consideration to nominate me, and for the rest of my peers on ebay who voted for me, I may not know who you all are, but I warmly thank you.