Tuesday, April 24, 2007


"Amish Quilt"

For most of my college years, I had the privilege of attending a small, Christian college nestled in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia. I'd come there to study Nursing; and, like most college students, I'd come at a time in my life when I was figuring out my own beliefs and values.

This was no ordinary college, for it had its' roots firmly planted in the soil and heritage of the Mennonite community . I had no idea when I enrolled as a student (so many years ago!) that I was also about to embark on a cross-cultural journey...

One of the life-changing lessons I learned while in college was the value of living more-with-less. I gradually began to discover that living simply was a deeply held value for the Mennonite community. These were people who thought globally and acted locally. They talked about being good stewards of the earth. They helped me see how a minority of the world's people live affluently, while a great majority of others live every day in poverty. They challenged me to develop a lifestyle that focused on service instead of accumulation. They showed me how to think "outside the box" about recycling, reusing, and renewing our worlds' limited resources. They helped me discover the value of living in community.

I will forever be thankful for my years living among the Mennonites!! Their teachings about simplicity and the way in which they modeled a lifestyle of more-with-less influence who I am and how I live to this very day.

My cooking "Bible" continues to be "The More With Less Cookbook" by Doris Jansen Longacre (c) 1976 Herald Press.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007


One of the unexpected JOYS! I've experienced from selling my artwork on eBay has been discovering the large and diverse eBay Art Community. Many artists, creating in a wide variety of media, sell their artwork as Self-Representing Artists (SRA) on eBay.

These artists "meet" each other and interact together in eBay groups ~ some large, some small, and some focused on certain art topics.

I am a member of several eBay art groups; but my favorite BY FAR is CaaT (Complementary Art And Things). CaaT is a supportive group of artists who seek to help each other learn and grow, both as artists and as successful business people.

Since many artists are now turning to blogging in order to bring their art and their thoughts to the public, CaaT has recently started its' own Blog Theme Group. Each week we will be representing in some creative way that week's blog topic. Some may write or paint or collage or sculpt or capture the spirit of the theme with photography. The interpretation of the theme is entirely up to each artist's very unique imagination! :)

Up to this point, I've been illustrating my blog posts with my own original artwork. I LOVE the idea of creating a blog in this way!! The reality of this approach for me, however, is that, with the crazy~busyness of life, time for artmaking sometimes gets squeezed out. As a result, my blog updates have been few and far between.

And so, I'm embracing something new.... I will still try to illustrate my entries ~ afterall, that's part of what makes blogging FUN for me! But, I may also sneak in a few unillustrated posts now and again. Who knows?... I may even have to try my hand at photography!

No matter what form blogging may take for me from here on, I look forward to joining with fellow artists on this one-of-a-kind creative journey!!

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