Sunday, May 30, 2010

Another road the Pizza Farm!

Hubby and I so enjoyed our one-day road trip last week that we decided to take another. My hubby suggested that we make it an early anniversary trip. He knew that I needed to get away so that I wouldn't turn into a worry-wart and think about all the changes in my life right I called it the "Don't let a little thing like a layoff get you down" trip.

We headed out in the morning and got off the busy freeway quickly...this road trip was all about taking it slow and relaxing'. And I love traveling country roads during the summer! 

We made a stop in Northfield, MN...a small, country/college town that has an artsy feel. I even visited an artist consignment shop and talked to them about featuring some of my art.

Then it was off to Red Wing where we checked into our favorite place to rest and get pampered--the Moondance Inn. It is a lovely victorian home turned into a B&B. We discovered it 3 years ago with a trip for our honeymoon. We've been back several times since. Definitely one of my happy places. 

After checking in and throwing our bags in the lovely Queen's Room, we jumped back in the car and headed out to our evening's destination--the Pizza Farm.

The Pizza Farm is located a few miles outside of Stockholm, WI.  Even if the pizza wasn't any good (and it is very good), just the scenic drive out to the farm would be worth it. I guess drives in the country remind me of my childhood, when we would pile into the car on a Sunday evening and go for a drive. Not with a plan to go anywhere, but just to drive and look at the countryside. 

I wonder if families do this any more?

I love seeing old white country churches like these. Again, memories of childhood.

The Pizza Farm doesn't advertise. They don't have a website. No fancy menus, just a chalkboard with a list of the evening pizzas. No tables, just a lawn with a few picnic tables. In fact, you have to bring your own paper plates, utensils, beverages and whatever side dishes you desire. 

The Pizza Farm only makes pizza...some mighty fine pizza. And only on Tuesdays. 4:30--??

We found out about the Pizza Farm during one of our many trips to Moondance. We made our first trip to the Pizza Farm last year for our anniversary. I've been dreaming of going back ever since. 

Most of the pizza ingredients are locally grown/produced...much of it right at the Pizza Farm. The pizzas are baked in the two outdoor brick ovens. This is what you get--

It's quite enjoyable eating your pizza on the lawn. Great people watching. Families, friends all meet up at the Pizza Farm. Folks bring tables, a whole spread of food,'s quite the gathering. I think the pizza is enough.

And once you're done eating pizza, you can stroll around the farm and work off a little of the pizza.

There are even friendly farm animals to visit. Oh, if you do google "Pizza Farm" you will find some reviews, from food critics and bloggers--all raving about the Pizza Farm. I found this cute Sesame Street-style video here.

After our overnight stay at Moondance, we headed back home--again on country roads. We were traveling those country roads, where in the middle of almost-nowhere we saw this:

Totally unexpected, we found a Buddhist temple. We just had to turn back and take some pics!

Thank you to my love for understanding that I needed this mini-vacation. I needed a week to just relax a little and let go. I needed to re-charge and get ready to take on life again. 

And so I plan on kickin' it this coming week. But that's a story for another day. 

Saturday, May 29, 2010

A little boost for you

Just a little video inspiration I found while blog-surfing. It's a perfect little boost of inspiration before you hit the studio or any sort of creative endeavor. It is a music video for Tanya Davis' song Art by Andrea Dorfman--I found it posted on a blog I just discovered--the blog is written by Kelly McMichael. Check out the video and then Kelly's blog. Enjoy!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

A Day in Stockholm

Today hubby and I took a quick road trip to the charming little town of Stockholm...Wisconsin. It is a small town filled with artists....

and gardens...

and lovely old buildings.

It was an unseasonably hot and very humid day...with thunder clouds threatening...but still it was nice to get away, relax and enjoy a brief trip out of town. Friday was my last day of work, so this was my weekend to unwind.

Stockholm is a town we love to visit every summer. Every time we visit we fantasize about what it would be like living in such a town...definitely slower-paced, but a community rich with artists. It is a town of old buildings turned into gift shops, restaurants, and galleries. In the summer all the gift shops and galleries open their doors to the tourists. And the green space is lush and filled with flowers.

There is even a lovely program that allows you to "check out" a bike or an umbrella (if there's a need) while you're visiting.

It was a wonderful greatly needed and appreciated. We will definitely return to Stockholm again this summer...perhaps another time when I'm in search of a little peaceful getaway.

You can check out my whole set of pictures of our Stockholm trip at my Flickr site. 

Saturday, May 15, 2010

Dream Beauty

It's been an exhausting few weeks...with just one more week till my job as a social worker ends. Every day feels a little like riding an emotional roller coaster. And every day feels more about endings than beginnings.

By the time I get home at night I feel drained. Not much left in the way of creative energy.
But the wheels in my head are still turning...and I'm still looking forward to spending more time painting.

In the last few weeks I've been seeking out comfort by heading to some of my favorite places. One of my favorite places is the flower gardens at Lyndale Park Gardens in Minneapolis. I not only found comfort there, but also beauty and inspiration.

Perhaps my favorite gardens at Lyndale is the Peace Garden (also known as the Rock Garden). Among the flower gardens are also several stone sculptures with words that reflect the theme of peace carved into the stone.

On one stone I read: 
"Breathe truth. Dream Beauty. Imagine Justice."

And also: 
"Grieve Honestly. Nurture Nature. Remember Humanity."

"Accept Fragility. Return Love."

I'm letting these words and images guide me through these coming weeks. 

And I'm also using these words and images as inspiration for a new series of paintings...because the one thing I know is that painting will lead me to my new beginning. 

Thursday, May 6, 2010

I'm published--in Studios magazine

I came home yesterday to find my advance, complimentary copy of Cloth Paper Scissors' Studios magazine had arrived! What a day brightener (certainly needed!) 

I haven't wanted to write about it till it was a sure thing...I guess this makes it a done deal!

A few months ago my best friend, Julie, suggested that I submit photos of my studio to CPS. Actually she did so right here on my blog...and the editor of Studios saw the comment and encouraged me to do so.

Well, my friend and artist, Julie had just finished re-doing her own studio space in her I suggested we both do it! That set off a busy few weeks of picture taking, tweeking pics...and getting them in to the magazine to meet their summer issue deadline (it was more complicated than you might imagine...but fun!)

So this is the result...

We both made it in the issue...Julie's name is at the top of the list of studio vignettes. The picture above is from the Table of Contents page...which also includes one of my pics!

The issue is available in bookstores and art stores May 18th. I've been waiting patiently to see a copy and I'm glad I didn't have to wait any longer! This is a good reminder to me to try new'll never know where they might lead!

Oh, and a number of my art friends (met via the internet) are also featured in this issue...congrats to Kim Geiser, Jodi Ohl, and Pam Carriker!

Thanks Julie for the encouragement! Here's a link to Julie's blog featuring her great work!


Sunday, May 2, 2010

Lowertown First Friday--It's Back!

Missed the Art Crawl? Or just want to come back to see more?

Lowertown artists will open their studios this coming Friday--May 7th--for Lowertown First Friday. This is an ongoing monthly event taking place on the first Friday of each month from 6-9 p.m.

Join us the First Friday of each month for...

Open Artist Studios * Gallery Openings * Entertainment & More

Buildings participating in Lowertown First Fridays include:

Jax Building - 253 E 4th Street
Lowertown Lofts Artists Cooperative - 255 E Kellogg
Northern Warehouse - 308 Prince Street
Tilsner Artist Cooperative-300 Broadway Street
Northwestern Bldg--275 E 4th Street

as well as openings at the following galleries:

AZ Gallery - 308 Prince Street
Black Dog Cafe - corner of 4th and Broadway
Peach (Northwestern Bldg - 275 E 4th Street

Several Lowertown bars and restaurants will be featuring food specials, along with entertainment, during Lowertown First Friday. Convenient parking located in the lot at Kellogg and Broadway.

I will, of course, have my Tilsner studio open--300 Broadway Street, Studio 507. There will be treats and lots of art! Other artists at the Tilsner will be open, along with a video installation of four short films that will be presented in the Tilsner Atrium. I guess since I will soon be without a job this will be a true "starving artist sale". LOL...just hope you will stop by and say hi!