February 12, 2017

Weekend of Hearts

From the Scottish Poem Library:
'Quietly, amid the rush-hour bustle,
I blush.
I smile just thinking of you.'

I like the days and weeks leading up to Valentine's Day because of all the creative and crafty hearts that begin to pop up and decorate shop windows, stationary stores, and garden nurseries.  It's difficult to avoid buying something with a heart on it or shaped like a heart.    I visited my sister n law Stella this week.  She always has her kitchen table prepared for her family or a guest and it's always decorated in the spirit of the season or holiday. I stopped at La Monarca Bakery in East Los Angeles, on Whittier Blvd.  They have a lovely selection of Mexican sweet breads (pan dulce).  Delicious and colorful.  Lastly, on Saturday morning my husband and I went to PDM in Newport Beach, Ca and had tea and the to die for cinnamon twist.  We got there at 7am and the twists were warm with a flaky crispness on the outside.  Simply divine.  

January 30, 2017

Little Red Backpack

 I made a friend through a friend (her mother).  Her name is Aja ("asia").  I was drawn to her before meeting her because her mother described her in a way that peaked my interest.  She's a "foodie", she likes the cold weather, she's traveled, she's adventurous, and she likes quirky things.  I'm none of the above except I like quirky things.  I travel, but I'm not a world traveler like Aja.  I'm too timid or chicken for that.  I like comfort zones.  This week I received a surprise gift package. Inside was a tiny red leather backpack and it had a tiny note inside from Aja.  She bought the backpack in Tokyo, Japan.  It's a keychain...said all the kids wear them. Aja made tiny paper origami stars which were loose in the package.  She also included a favorite book of hers titled "Lost in Translation", having nothing to do with the movie.  It has unusual words in different languages with sweet illustrations to match.  Lastly, Aja was so sweet to use the rubber stamps I gave her with Seattle images...well, she lives in Seattle.  This was one fun and happy mail day.

The Cat's Eye

This is a hair salon I walked by while in Ballard (Seattle) on 11/29/16.  So charming and cheerful.  The sun was actually out this day.  Old town Ballard.  There happened to be a wonderful children's toy store a few doors down, but over priced.

Savor of Life

Paris Tea is the life of savoring flavor and aroma.
When I was 22 a co-worker invited me to lunch. We walked to her house and she made chile rellenos and a pot of English tea. She served it in an English teapot and added cream to my cup of tea. I'd never heard of cream added to tea, having grown up in East Los Angeles where I saw no one add cream to tea.  I never turned back.  My tea always has cream.  That opened up a whole new world of discovering and tasting a variety of tea flavors but I always fall back to a delicious cup of a blend of black teas.  This Paris loose leaf tea is from the Perennial Tea Room in Seattle's Pike Place Market area.  A lovely tea room and proprietor.  So much to choose from.

January 9, 2017


The Hummingbird is definitely the commanding admiral of any place it perches.  For such a tiny bird, it packs a huge punch of hutspa, gusto, and confidence.  Hummingbirds are fierce when protecting its territory.  It wants all the nectar to itself.  When it comes to raising young, the males are "wham, bam, thank you mam". They take no part in rearing their young.  The mother does it all.  This hummingbird is a male Allen's which has established my back yard garden as his territory, but so have a few others.  The battles are daily and often.

September 29, 2016


"Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible". Dalai Lama

On occasion I faulter  .

September 18, 2016


Midnight on a train
Twelve forty seven a.m.
Lights are dim
Stars take a swim
In the darkness
And the glow 
Of the moon 
                       jaxiejax '16

September 17, 2016

Where the Secrets of Ravens Go

I have a mixed media drawing notebook with ecru colored paper.  I love ecru colored paper.  It's so forgiving and timeless.  In my dreams I look like my girl characters that I paint but most importantly is that I experience what they experience...being in the forest or tundras with birds and flowers and grasses.   (Watercolor)

Raven oh Raven
tell me your secret
trust in me 
I do no harm
share your spirit
walk in my path
hold my hand
I'll shall write your name
deep and bold 
on the sand.
                                           jaxiejax '16


A Golden-crowned Kinglet is a bird I've never seen before. Oh to have one land on my window sill and give me some sort of sign, even speak a word of magic.  Now that would be something to remember until my last breath.  Watercolor painting of my version of a Golden-crowned Kinglet.  Such royalty in the name.

A poem from a Scottich Poetry site:
Free as a Bird
With no roots
With no barrier

Free as a bird
I want to be

Despite the fears of freedom
Despite the vulnerability of the unattached
Despite the unfamiliarity of the unknown

Free as a bird
I want to be

Woven into the warmth of the evening wind
Swaying on the willow tree’s branches
Carried by the breath of the stars

Free as a bird
I want to be

From here to there
Never missed and never expected
Never recognized and never attached

Free as a bird
I want to be
Elizabeth Kaufman-Buchel

September 10, 2016

The Phoebe

I have an affinity for Black Phoebe's.  They are flycatchers.  Flycatchers have a wonderful crest seen at it's profile angle.  They have a sweet chirp and are pleasant to watch catching insects in mid-air.  They are in many parts of California and just about any park in their range.  I like to paint Black Phoebe's.  These photographs taken in yard or thereabouts.

Posman Books

A favorite bookstore of mine is Posman Books.  Unfortunately for a Californian like me they are located in New York City where I discovered them at Rockefeller Center and Chelsea Market.  There are only two.  It's a family operated business.  I find the best Christmas cards at Posman.  I wish they had an on-line shop.  Great bookstores are far and few inbetween.  Chronicle Books in San Francisco is another favorite bookstore.  I love bookstores that sell wonderful stationary, greeting cards, writing utensils and odds and ends.  This photo is from Chelsea Market 

September 4, 2016

Little Pots of Life

I have an attraction to planter pots with animal motif's.  They are fanciful and cheerful, just exactly what we need on this planet.  When I paint, I imagine fanciful things 'existing only in the imagination'...my imagination.  These pots are kin to my fanciful thoughts.

In Prisma

Prisma has an iPhone application with many filters to modify a photograph to look artistically done.  I used a photograph of my watercolor painting

His Quandary

Mr. B had surgery due to an abscess. He's miserable. He wants to know why he has this beyond irritating contraption around his neck. Each day he looks out the window wishing someone could be ever so kind and release him. If he could speak he'd compromise and tell me "I'm just going to walk around. Deal?"

September 3, 2016

Collections Are Good For The Spirit

I collect many things, including greeting cards that move me, or have fabulous images of art. I collect artworks by KalleArte which is a husband and wife art duo. Their specialty is hand pulled screen prints or woodcut block prints. They are one of my favorite artists. Wholesomely beautiful human beings. Here I bought two of their prints and two cut out stickers also hand printed and hand cut to shape.  The print of the male Zapatista with a covered face represents "without ego...we are all the same", the moon and stars image represents "we are all a part of a bigger idea, our relationship with each other represents more than ourselves",  the blue dog sticker is KalleArtes interpretation of one of the 20 days of the Aztec calendar, and the red jaguar sticker represents the ocelot. In this photograph I also have a greeting card that depicts a sterling silver owl broach, just exquisite. I purchased it from my mother's Art boutique named Colibri Boutique is East Los Angeles.  It's a lovely gift and clothing shop. A very lovely space to be. The other two greeting cards are from a shop in South Pasadena on Mission Street.  I love the cat greeting card's sentiment. Lastly, you may notice the brown Kraft paper background...those are art stencils for use with my mixed media artworks. I just received a variety of 10 in the post. May your eyes be pleased. 

September 2, 2016

I cannot help what happens when I put a brush to paper

A tiny collection of paint brushes and nib pens.  Only a fraction of what's inside the drawers.  Funny that I can't resists buying new paint brushes yet I fall back to my most favorite old brushes nearly every time.  It's an addiction to "oh the possibilities".

August 30, 2016

Not All Things Are Lost

Lately there has been so much loss of life of those I knew and did not know.  They leave behind little gifts that pop up when it's least expected.  They are found in a face on the street, a quote read on-line, a voice nearby, a rustle of leaves, a bird flying by.  How grand of them to do this for those of us who are left behind.  

August 20, 2016

The Sanctuary of Shallow Waters

This Black-necked Stilt was foraging the shallow water.  The day before this pond was dried out and the mud turned into a crackled floor.  This pond among many at the San Joaquin Wildlife Sanctuary is owned by  The Irvine Water District in Orange County, California.  Many Western Sandpipers were foraging through the dried out pond the day before I took this photograph.

August 15, 2016

The Flag Waver

My dear friend taught me to add cream to my tea. She lived in London for some time, having met the man she fell in love with there and married there. She now lives in California and teatime is a constant, served on a platter in a Tudor style home, with a wood beamed ceiling, wing backed chairs, art, and lots of books. Watercolor and color pencil.

Where the Cypress Learn To Grow

I've had a long standing fondness with Cypress trees, mainly the Swane's Golden Italian Cypress.  It's a beautiful lime and chartreuse colored Cypress that just seems so regal, standing tall and vibrant. Swane's  Golden Italian Cypress light up a landscape.  They give me a sense of satisfaction to my day.  Birds enjoy landing at the tip and balancing themselves as they sing.