Monday, May 25, 2020

Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow.....

we honor the brave men and women from our past and present who fought hard to protect our country - to keep it safe from harm and allow us the freedom we so passionately embrace. I would like to personally honor my family, most have passed on, some I've never met but all give me such a sense of pride in knowing what they have done for our country. I am honored to have had them in my life...to call them uncle, grandpa, dad and friend. 
   My great grandfather - Frank Sandell was in the 2nd N.Y. Calvary Regiment Harris Light Calvary. He fought in major engagements of war including the Battle of Gettysburg. From what I gather, he was quite a character and Oh...how I wish I could have met him.


My wonderful uncles above - Uncle Ted on left who was in the army during WWII and my Uncle John who served in the Navy during WWII also. They were such fun uncles and honorable men.
My dad Edward Sandell (last in front row on left) was a Navy man and fought in the Pacific Theatre during WWII. He was a wonderful dad who always took me for Carvel ice cream.
My sister-in-laws hubby Joe Neill was in the Army during Viet Nam - won a Bronze star.....and I might add makes a wicked chocolate martini.
And our heros today who are fighting a very different but equally dangerous battle...a battle that knows no bounderies and does not discriminate...a battle that is dangerous and scary and when all is said and done, will have changed our lives as we know it...forever. To the wonderful and brilliant Dr. Anthony Fauci and
............ all the heroes and front line workers and everyone in between who put their lives on the line every day to keep us safe and the best country on earth.
 Thank you.....

And....God Bless America - may we always fly free.


Wednesday, May 20, 2020

Corona and Woolworth

 The Corona virus has taken its toll on the world and the new "normal" will most likely never be the same. Our gallery space at Woolworth in downtown Asheville, NC has been closed for over a month and no telling when it will re-open. Last week artists were allowed to come in (by appointment) to freshen up and restock their gallery space.

 The staff were cleaning places I don't think they knew existed and everything was sparkling as well as germ free.....Besides heavy cleaning, painting and general rejunvenating was going on. I had removed most of my things to do an updated inventory and just put everything back.  I know everyone in Asheville is taking things slow which I'm so thankful for but when they do limited opening here is what our booth will look like.

 I share a space with Mary Stori whose beautiful work you see above and below...
 We work very differently and have a large variety of fiber art for sale...(below - mine on left and Mary's on right)
I hope you'll drop by when the time is right and you feel comfortable to do so. We are in space # 235 on the lower level.
 My son Mikey Simmons also has a space on the lower level with beautiful paintings and drawings..
I think you will enjoy seeing his work also....
As the new norm....Stay safe, wash your hands, be happy...Hope to see you from 6' away sometime soon...

Sunday, May 17, 2020

From this to.........

THIS......
My niece just sent pictures of her twin girls...now almost 5 months old, laying on the I Spy Quilts I made for them. They each got their own to drag around and sit on....the quilts are a little different from the other but both very colorful and fun for a little one...



I know I'm partial but I do think these are the cutest babies ever...just want to squeeze them and kiss on them. They live in NY so it will be a while before I get to see them.....so glad they're enjoying their quilts.

Sunday, May 10, 2020

"I Remember Mama"

...is an old movie from the 40s and one of my favorites....I watch it every year when it's on and this year it is...TCM at 8 this evening. It's about a Swedish family who come to America for a better life....bringing all the sisters and uncles and cousins that makes up their clan. The story is simple, dealing with everyday problems and joys and the very subtle role the mother plays in them. It's a tug at your heart strings movie with beautiful moments; it specifically shows the strength of this wonderful woman and mother, a strength she was not aware of herself.
Life was simple back then but also difficult and different from the life we know today.

As a little girl, I remember my mama holding me by the shoulders and saying to me..." I just want you to be strong". I would answer, "well of course I'm strong....I can run this fast and lift this high and open this jar"...completely unaware of the real meaning. As I got older, I realized the power of her message and how it helped her in her own life. 




My mom and her mom - my grandmother who lived next door could do anything. I grew up thinking this is what women do...from painting the house, fixing the hedge shears, taking a toaster apart, and styling your hair....from making all your clothes, drapes for the house, evening gowns for the Eastern Star and warm winter coats.....from being my playmate, my Brownie leader and neighborhood mom whose house we always ended up in and one of my fondest memories....making jelly apples for Halloween. Our house was the last to visit and my mom always had to start the first bite of the apple as the little ones couldn't bite into them. 



Top left, my mom upper left, me lower left as a toddler....top right my mom and I...below left - my mom at a cookout with the brownie troop...she was the leader and lower right...my beautiful mom.
She was the best mom ever and I was so blessed to have this wonderful woman to raise and teach me the values I hold so dear today....One of my favorite photos above...says it all... - Till We Meet and we will again some day....Love you mom.