Playing Catch-up and New Adventures

Seems like each time I make plans to be more active here, the more that life throws challenges, curve-balls or such. That said, will be making a more concerted effort to do what I need to do both here on the blog and on my website. After all, each is only as good as the information they provide.

To play catch-up, as it were, guess I should fill in the blanks on what has been going on. I have been taking painting classes, exhibiting at various venues and expanding my art quilt expertise. All of these things have played a big part of my not being here and doing regular postings. Perhaps by placing a scheduled time on calendar, I will get things done. Another big event, or adventure, that has taken place was a trip to beautiful Quito, Ecuador this past July. We have been so smitten with the country, that we are returning for another visit and will be seeing Cuenca, Loja and Vilcabamba. This trip will help us decide where we wish to call home.

A new adventure along the ever changing road that we call life. Among the challenges we will face are a new language, new culture and a whole new way of living. We are excited about it and so looking forward to our new life. While learning Spanish will be a little harder for us “old” folks, it will add a little spark to routine everyday outings, such as grocery shopping or finding our way around. The laid back or manana attitude will be something else to get use to in our dealings with various enterprises. Here in the U.S.A. its rush, rush, rush and I want it today and I want it now attitude. There, response time is a little slower as priorities are different there. Familia, or family is everything.

It is my plan to share our experiences both in getting there and living there. Will deal with the day to day as well as explorations of our new home. Hope you will join me in my travels and new adventures.

Let me share a few pictures with you from our July 2016 visit to beautiful Quito.

The first picture is of the hand-carved ceiling and architecture of a small church in old historic Quito. The middle picture is that of the entryway to the Cathedral San Francisco which contains over 400 pounds of gold leaf on walls, statuary, and hand carved railings and such. You can take photo’s of the outside, and the entryway, but interior photos are not allowed. The last picture is of one of the old and beautiful buildings in down-town San Francisco area of Old Quito.

Come back to see more and follow my adventures as this “gringo” learns her way around a new home. Until next time, hasta manana!

Terri at the Drake’s Nest in Palm Bay, Florida


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Enjoying some Creativity and a New Year’s Resolution

I have played more and more with acrylics and enjoying some quality time with my dear friend Josie at a painting class. In the recent classes, you pick what you wish to work on and get help with bringing it to fruition. I’m liking the techniques we are learning and expanding my ability to paint. I’m getting more comfortable with myself and what I can do. Having a great support group helps immensely.

The latest painting is a Blue Heron on its nest. It has a way to go, but I’m pleased with how it is looking. It’s amazing what one can do when surrounded by people who are all positive, encouraging and not judgmental. Quite different from what I’ve had in the past. Now it is only up and onward.

Heron progress

I made a resolution for 2016 and that is to quit looking at the past and look towards the future and live in today. One cannot change the past and by letting it influence your today and tomorrow only results in the “negatives” affecting today’s “positives.” The results are not pretty and you end up being unhappy, not believing in yourself and letting your future be shaped and influenced by the things you cannot change. NO MORE! I intend to dwell in the here and now and change those things I can. By becoming aware of what I have been doing, which has been very detrimental to my development, I can change those negatives into positives. I know it won’t happen over night, but being aware and wanting to change for the better, is a very big step.

Happy New Year everyone, may you and yours enjoy all the very best that life has to offer.

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Creativity with acrylics

While I LOVE creating fiber art, art quilts, quilts, and such, I also thoroughly enjoy painting and sketching. For the past few months, I have traveled about an hour and a half (one way) to Titusville, Florida to attend a painting event sponsored by Paint, Wine & whimsy. They meet 2-3 times the first of the month and while some nights are just for fun, other nights they are doing fund-raisers for various charities, schools, etc. A really great way to explore painting to see if you like it or to improve your skills if you’ve been away from it for a while. I fall into the latter group.

The most recent additions to my “collection” of paintings I have worked on are Sea Turtle and Garden Gate. The Sea Turtle picture, I believe is supposed to be a loggerhead, but I’m not certain. While I did complete this painting at the event, I worked on it a little more today to add a little more detail. I’m quite pleased with how it turned out.

Turtle finished

The Garden Gate painting is a winter scene and while I do like the way it turned out, I think I may redo it on a larger canvas where I can really play with the scene and work on the details.

Garden Gate

What do you do to satisfy that creative person inside you? Do you paint? Crochet? Perhaps you do photography. Would love to hear what you do when you are feeling creative.

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Spirit Wolf Progressing Nicely

Before I update, I would like to ask for and offer prayers for the people of France who are under attack by terrorists. Our world is going crazy!

Have you ever worked on something and said to yourself, “I’m only going to do a bit.” When you next look at the clock are you surprised to find that “bit” has turned into several hours? When I am working on a creative piece, I find that I lose all track of time unless I put on a timer of some sort. A good clue for me that I’ve worked too long without a break is when my shoulders and neck begin to burn and hurt.

Spirit Wolf is progressing quite nicely and I am very pleased with the progress. Still not sure whether I want this as a wall hanging, the center medallion for a quilt or possibly the center of a large embellished dream catcher. One thing I know or certain, the piece will tell me how it wants to be finished when the time comes. Until then, I will be enjoying the journey of discovery and creativity.

Wolf SPirit Friday progress

Late Friday progress Wolf Spirit

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Creativity Spurt!

I am in a “large” project phase at the moment. While I am toying with where to go next on the project with the trees, I had another creativity spurt. This one even has a title, Wolf Spirit, and will combine thread painting with InkTense sticks. For those not familiar with InkTense, it is a dye that comes in pencil and stick form. You can use them with water like watercolor, or use clear Aloe Vera gel to keep the colors from spreading. They are great to use to enhance embroidery, thread paintings, applique, etc. to add shadows, depth and color. I love the way they handle and the way they can add punch to any project.

As I look at the beginnings of the Wolf, I’m toying with the idea of cutting it out instead of leaving it in a traditional setting. Will have to ponder how I want to go about this. Have some stitching on this, but as you can see, I have a long way to go.

Wolf Spirit close

Wolf Spirit

Between working on a book, working on copy writing and fiber art projects, I have kept rather busy. Life is too short to not do that which gives you joy, or to get out and experience all this great big blue marble has to offer.

Time for me to go and check on dinner!

Namaste – Terri at the Drake’s Nest in beautiful Palm Bay, Florida

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Life is an Adventure

Getting up early in the morning was always a problem when I was going to school. “Just five more minutes, Mom,” was always my response to the call to get up or I was going to miss the school bus. Now, 65 years later I find I’m like a kid again when I’m getting ready for an exploring adventure. The night before the trip, I can’t seem to get to sleep due to all the excitement.

Living here in beautiful sunny Central Florida, there are countless opportunities for adventure, whether it be at the beach, Universal Studios, Disney World or hiking a trail, there are countless things to see and do. Yesterday, I had a wonderful time at a place called Forever Florida! This is a lovely spot in St. Cloud, Florida that was started to honor the memory of a son who loved exploring the outdoors and as a way of preserving samples of Florida’s eco system so that others may learn how nature plays an important part of our lives. Forever Florida offers 3-different types of zip line adventures, such as a zip line roller coaster; horse back riding, cattle round-up and a coach ride that is well up off the ground. Now, before I go further, let me say that I have no vested interest in Forever Florida, I am not an employee, stockholder, etc. Just a very satisfied customer who will definitely be making more than one return trip!

My wonderful husband, Ray, and I did the coach ride and being early in the week, there were only seven (7) people on the entire coach. It was like having a private tour and was not rushed. The trip started out with a 30-minute video presentation explaining how the park came to be and then you were out the door and into the coach. First we went through the “farm” portion where they raise cattle, which supplies the meat for their cafe and clients can partake of the food or purchase meat to take home. The food was delicious! They also raise horses that are direct descendants of the beautiful horses that Ponce de Leon brought to Florida from Spain. Along the route you had beautiful country side, where wild turkeys, wild boars, deer, and alligator were seen. Not to mention the biggest spiders I have ever seen hanging in between some of the trees bordering the area between the farm and the wilderness! They are called Banana spiders and the ones we saw were a good two (2) inches in size!

Riding along and feeling the breeze, listening to the sounds of the many birds we saw and the wonders of the Cypress, ponds and the various plants, gopher tortoises and hopes of seeing a Florida Panther or Bobcat, was extremely relaxing. It made you appreciate the early explorers and all that they had to contend with using nothing but their wits, swords, and black powder pistols.

Hope you enjoy the few pictures that I’ve posted below. If you get a chance, please go and experience Forever Florida for yourself.


This picture is of a pond close to the lodge where you begin your adventure. It has a tiny island in the middle that is home to Heron, and other birds, that make their nests there. They do this to prevent predators from getting their eggs or their babies. If a predator wants a bird, it must swim across alligator filled waters. The picture below is after the fog lifted.


The next two photos are of some of the cypress ponds and an alligator we surprised on our return portion of the journey. I was amazed at just how fast he moved. An interesting note on the alligator, if you ever encounter one and need to run from it, DO NOT run in a straight line but in a zig zag fashion. They can’t turn quickly; however, they can run up to 15 miles an hour!



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Art Quilt Progresses

First let me say Happy Halloween, although it doesn’t feel like it should be here already. We only had 8 children ring the door bell tonight compared to 20 we had last year. I’m beginning to think that going door to door will soon be a thing of the past as people are either doing trunk or treat from cars or having “harvest” festivals/parties to offer a safer venue for our youth.

After working a little more on the art quilt this evening, I’ve had to step back and take a good hard look at its progress. I know “what” I want to do, just not sure “how” to go about it. The quilt seems to have a voice of its own and I’m having to listen to what it’s trying to tell me. Have you ever worked on a project with a plan in mind only to have it take a completely different turn and end up totally different from what you had planned? Happens to me quite often, which is a good thing, so I’m always excited to see where my journey will finally conclude.

Fiber art progress

Thank you for joining me on my creative journey. God bless and have a fantasmagorical week.

Terri at the Drake’s Nest

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