Magnolia Tree

Martin Johnson Heade was a 19th century American painter, initially part of the Hudson River School depicting the New England landscape… until he ventured to South America and discovered the fantastical world of hummingbirds, orchids, passion flowers, magnolia blossoms and lotus blossoms which Roberta Smith of the NY Times describes as ‘palpably naturalistic yet dramatically decorative and artificial.’
MARTIN JOHNSON HEADE by Theodore E. Stebbins, Jr.

There are some things that make me appreciative of living in Austin…experiencing the magnificent Magnolia tree is one of them!

This beautiful specimen is in a lovely garden that Jason has had the privilege of working in for the past year. Every few weeks I stop by this project to see Jason’s progress and enjoy the seasonal changes in the landscape.

The Magnolia blossoms were so beautiful today… inky white petals and leathery green leaves…
one time I asked a shoe maker to dye me a pair of boots like a Magnolia leaf… just so you know, he couldn’t quite do it.

May your Day be full of May

One spring I was asked along with others, to set up a table at a ladies luncheon sharing my design work. On display here is a wedding invitation I made (and had printed) for my friends Spring and Orlando along with some other Annie’s Omnium promotional cards.

Jason helped me build this beautiful base for a May pole out of grape vine and moss. Jason planted fragrant jasmine, echeveria, sedums, graptoveras, and other delicate spring flowers.

Here is the table from the distance. I have always loved May Day and although this posting is 23 days late… may your day be full of may !!!

Tea Rose & Eggs

Feeling lucky to have a husband who is a gardener! Feeling lucky to have chickens in the backyard! Our family owned business JBIRD & COMPANY offers a variety of services… design, construction, maintenance. Installing vegetable gardens, planting fruit trees, building chicken coops, and helping people have an urban farm~ no matter how small… in their backyard (or front yard) are some of the services that we provide. Stay tuned for a new and improved www site for JBIRD & COMPANY with lovely photographs by our talented friend Jody Horton.

Happy Birthday Sister Mary!

My dear older sister Mary celebrates her birthday tomorrow, May 20th. She is an amazing Mom to 2 lovely girls, beautiful writer & quilter , runs a dude ranch in Southern Arizona with her husband Charley. Mary has her masters degree in Environmental Studies and puts those skills to use regularly with the Altar Valley Conservation Alliance. I have had the pleasure of visiting her (& her family) 3 times over the past 6 months. It has been a real treat to spend time together and be in her dynamic world (I didn’t even scratch the surface listing all the the things she accomplishes in a day)! HAPPY BIRTHDAY MARY… thanks for being such a wonderful sister~ your strong spirit, warm heart, and incredible work ethic are great inspiration to me.

Three Paintings by Ollie

has been an inspiring book.



Ollie is painting with STOCKMAR paints. The pigments (liquid & water) are so pure and rich~ however they are mixed one gets a clear, vivid color~ which makes for beautiful results.
They are also a great introduction to color theory.

Welcome Oliver

Ollie just turned 3 a month ago. He has discovered the wonderful world of the dress up. What was once a elaborate wool Laplander in spirit skirt (packed in moth balls in the attic) made by Mom Nancy, has now become a cape from the castle. Ollie is comparing his costume with the costumes illustrated in his ALMOST EVERYTHING BOOK by Joelle Jolevit.