The Artists Next Door

Bethy and Emily came over yesterday to show me their latest polymer clay wares, and to get some advise about pricing for a show this weekend.  As their next-door neighbor, I’m so excited to see this creative duo in action!  They’re outside the box high school sisters with chutzpah and lots of creative energy.  It’s my pleasure to introduce you to them!

polymer clay ideas

Who is that mustachioed stranger? (Oh, it's my neighbor, Bethy!)

polymer clay art

A mug full o' polymer clay fun

polymer clay action figures

Yes, they're Marvel fans...

young artists

The cheeseburger ring is a. ma. zing!!

high school artists

Emily and Bethy of Pandora's Heart

This dynamic duo has a new Etsy shop. Check out Pandora’s Heart to find out more of what these girls are up to.  – Enjoy!

Thankful for Bookshelves


When I was at my parents house for Thanksgiving this week, everyone spent a lot of time reading.  Kids read with their feet propped up in comfy armchairs, grandparents pulled out the reading glasses, Todd snuggled up with his i Pad, and I wandered around looking at the bookshelves.

readingMy parents are official book-aholics.  They read prolifically, give books as gifts, and collect them on shelves, in stacks, in baskets and in the back seat of the car.

I certainly and thoroughly inherited this love.  When I was a kid and needed consequences and discipline, the only leverage my parents had was in my books.  If necessary, I would not be permitted to read in order to refine my focus on other areas, such as math problems, exercise, dishes, and getting dressed on the weekends.

love to read

I had some good tricks up my sleeve for sneaking my habit unnoticed…  (Cracking the door just so, to let in the tiniest shaft of light; the ability to feign sleep at a moment’s notice and to deftly slip a book into my pillowcase and under my cheek.)

Looking back, though, I wonder if my parents didn’t know all along of my sneaky ways, and yet allowed it to go on…  They empathized with my situation.

I am so thankful for the book passion that my parents nurtured in me.  Their shelves are full of books about faith, far away lands, how to build a deck, who murdered who, ideas, truth and humor.

My kids didn’t inherit orderliness from me, nor did I from my parents.  I’m so glad, though, that our stacks and piles and overflowing closets are mostly filled with books.

52 Fridays: #4 – Arkansas

I’ve been to Arkansas a couple times – we went into Eureka Springs after dropping off a group of kids from Urban Concern at a big Missouri summer camp.  My main focus was ice cream because Arkansas is HOT in the summer!

Home to Bill Clinton, Johnny Cash and Wal Mart, Arkansas is a place of great natural beauty, as well as creative energy.

arkansas artists

Lampwork Bead by James Tinker - Pocahontas

arkansas artists

by Ben Strawn - Fayettevillle

arkansas artists

Southwest Wool Rug by Debra DuBois - Fayetteville

arkansas potters

Tall Vase by Fletcher Larkin - Little Rock

arkansas artists

Tree of Life Pendant by Twining Vines Designs - Tumbling Shoals

arkansas artists

Framed Metal Beetle by Von Chandler - Fayetteville

arkansas artists

Handbuilt Stoneware Box by Kelley Wilks - Fayetteville

arkansas painters

Miss March by Cari Humphry - Fayetteville

arkansas sculpture

Breaking Loose by Primal Painter - Eureka Springs

fender telecaster art

Telecaster Tribute by Steve Spencer - Little Rock

Next week we’ll be visiting sunny California…  It will be a challenge to choose just 10 pieces, I’m sure!

Saving a Bit of Summer


It is already getting cold and wintery here in Ohio, so this weekend I decided to bring in a bit of the outdoors in the form of a terrarium. If I’m able, I’ll hold onto a bit of green all winter long.

how to make a terrarium

At the side of the house, our very shady damp yard is turning into a moss garden. I love moss, and am happy to have it as the sole inhabitant in my little glass bowls of green.  I scooped up two small patches for the project.  A little acorn came too.

easy home decorLucky me, I caught the half off sale at Goodwill this weekend and came home with two glass bowls for one dollar.  (If you know me, you know that I can’t drive past a thrift store or tag sale without stopping to look. :))

ideas for thrifty home decorMy kids helped scoop a bit of leftover potting soil into the bottom of each bowl.  Then they collected little rocks and dropped them in so the moss would feel more at home.

natural home decoratingNow, even when we’re snow covered for months, I’ll a have little bright spot in my office, reminding me of the warmth and green to come.

how to make a moss terrariumI may add a few baby ferns to the bowls in the spring, but until then I’ll just spritz the moss to keep it moist, and watch it do it’s moss thing.

52 Fridays: #3 – Arizona

Art tour of America
Arizona is home to 21 recognized Native American tribes, the Grand Canyon, and has a preponderance of artsy folk.  It also has “official neckwear“.  (Who knew?)

Arizona arts and crafts

Bolo Ties at Hubbell Trading Post by Adam Schallau

Arizona really is a rich state for the arts in that it has an ancient history, a variety of cultures today, and beautiful natural resources in metals, gems and wood.  As always, my 52 Fridays galleries really represent things that I respond to (not an official overview of the state’s art) but I’ve tried to include a mix of contemporary, traditional and modern traditional pieces in this mix.  Enjoy!

Arizona silver jewelry

Collarus Magnetic Necklace by Maureen Brusa Zappellini - Tuscon

Arizona bird painting

Shangri La by Raina Gentry - Prescott

Arizona pottery

Green and Tan Tea Bowl by Matt Sterbenz - Tempe

Arizona contemporary art

Recycled Angel by Lemon Oak Studio - Chandler

Arizona painters

Love Deeply with True Grace by Liz Vaughn - Tuscon

Arizona modern art

"Untitled" by Stephen Johnson - Mesa

silver hopi jewelry

Silver Hopi Bracelet, Charles Supplee (d. 2009) - Flagstaff

native hopi art

Sherd Jar with Star by Rainy Naha - Awatovi Mesa

black and white monoprint arizona art

My Pride is too Sly to Hold Back All My Dark by Hayley Cook - Phoenix

fallen tree sculpture arizona

One Night in the Desert by Elizabeth Frank, Tuscon

Next up on the tour… Arkansas!

It’s a Noonday Giveaway!


It’s our lucky, lucky day. 🙂  I can’t wait to share this giveaway with you – because you get to give right along with me!    All of these lovelies (and so many more!) come from the Noonday Collection – a wonderful assortment of artisan made accessories, decor and jewelry.

Handpainted Cups - India

Oh – what’s the giveaway?  It’s a $50 Noonday gift card!  (tingly feeling!)

blue necklace

Glass and Paper Necklace - Uganda

Noonday is special for a whole bunch of reasons…  The style is fab, fresh and modern; authentic and global.  All the goods are fair trade, and this boutique is rooted in concern for families and children…

“Noonday provides jobs that create a pathway out of poverty for women. A stable income means a family is less likely to abandon their child and are able to sustain their families.   Noonday also gives net proceeds towards orphan care and prevention.”

Rewind Clutch (made from recycled VHS tapes!) -New Delhi

“How do I enter?” you ask.  Well, it’s SO simple!
– All you have to do is subscribe to this blog, (tell me that you did 🙂 ) and then tell me what you like about Noonday in the comments below.

Ideas for unique Christmas Gifts

Star Arm Warmers - Peru

“Can I have another chance?” Of course, friends!
– Just “like” Mish Mash Make on Facebook, drop a comment, and you’ll be entered a second time. (how exciting!)

Ideas for handmade Christmas gifts

The giveaway ends Wednesday, November 22 at noon EST, so you’ve got time to tell a friend or two!  Best of luck!!!

Isaiah 58:10

Red Rake


Last week it snowed.  We realized that we’d waited too long to rake, so this sunny weekend was it.  I counted the trees in our yard – not including saplings, rhododendrons and azaleas, there are over 100!  That’s  a lot of leaves.  The Japanese maple leaves are almost all fallen, and they created a glowing red carpet on the ground.  I had to take a raking break to grab my camera!  (My husband told me to get back on task).

Our entire family worked in the yard – even baby was out there for a little while on his blanket.  At first, I was secretly hoping that a neighbor would see us, happily working together and being all Norman Rockwell-ish.  Then the fights started breaking out.  We have opinionated rakers, apparently.  I secretly hoped my neighbors had gone inside.

We finished the back yard, and all in all it was great day.  There is something just plain good about being outside, working, being with family (fighting is not so good) and getting something accomplished that we all feel proud of.  I think we’ll do a family project next weekend too… our basement has become the last frontier.  Please don’t expect any cute pictures next Monday though! The basement is not cute.

What did you do this weekend?  Any projects?  Any family time?  Other good things?  

52 Fridays – #2. Alaska

Art tour of american states

Today we are travelling northward to our largest state, the 49th in the Union – Alaska. I had to do some digging for today’s gallery, but I think it was worth it!  I found some great traditional art at Alaska House, plus more traditional pieces and modern work from studio sites around the web.  Which is your favorite?  I’ll tell you mine at the end. 🙂

traditional alaskan art

Ulu, made by Maynard Lindor, Dancing Man Knives - Homer (photo British

alaskan jewelry

Lampwork Bead by Basement Studios - Juneau

alaskan artists and jewelry

Necklace by Rowan Law - Juneau (photo Capital City Weekly)

Alaskan pottery and art

Fluke Sea Salt Jars by Colette Oliver - Juneau

art from alaska

Very Hungry Caterpillar Hat and Cocoon by Lina Poulson - Wasilla

Modern Alaskan Art

Custom Stuffed Animal Dress by Rachel Sigmon - Anchorage

native alaskan traditional art and clothing

Walrus Intestine Raincoat by Christina Alowa - St. Lawrence Island Yupik

alaska house

Brothers on the Water by Alvin Amason - Fairbanks (photo by superk8nyc)

Sara Tabbert Alaskan printmaker

Surface, woodcut print by Sara Tabbert - Fairbanks

alaska art photography

Winter Boating by Dustin Boller - Bethel

Frankly, I feel a little chilly after working on this gallery.  It’s time for a cup of Chai!  Have you chosen a favorite yet?  I think it’s hard to choose – there really is a wonderful range of work here.

I think I’m going to pick the Ulu.  Functional beauty is my thing – and I love the contrast of ruggedness and razor sharpness in these pieces.  They’re supposed to be beast in the kitchen, too!

Next week we’ll warm up, I promise…  We’re heading to Arizona!

“That’s Thrif-tastic!”

Today I’m introducing you to the first of “Heidi’s Greatest Thrift Store Steals”.  Why? Because I L-O-V-E getting a bargain, and I love to tell people how little I paid. (I know it’s obnoxious.  Sorry).  To be honest, I’d rather be thrifting, flea marketing or even trash-picking (my little table is trash picked!) than trolling same-old, same-old overpriced shops.

All the props in these pix are mine, and they were all either free or bought second hand.

Thrifty home decor

  • The mid-century Danish modern chair is a favorite.  I can’t believe I picked it up for $7.00! I’ve seen these for around $200.  Yay!
  • Love the crazing on this little green vase, and it’s just the right size for small bouquets.
  • I curb-side-rescued the little table, which I’m thinking of painting turquoise. The books are second hand, including a wonderful old Webster’s Dictionary for Boys and Girls.
  • I included the white picture frame because I have a bazillion frames that I’ve thrifted and used for my paintings.  Buying new “just right” frames is convenient but SO expensive!

Vintage gold chair

  • I have big dreams for this crazy hexagonal throne.  I’m not much for reupholstering, and I kind of like the gold velvet, so I think that will stay.  I’d like to paint the wood though…any suggestions?
  • Recently, I scored this lovely original print.  I did my best to track down info about the artist, but no luck.  I love original artwork, especially when I can afford it!
  • Oh, I have to mention the fabric that is covering my little table.  That came from one of about six big boxes of upholstery samples that I was given.  It’s my own little treasure trove (I do share, though – so if you live nearby, come and get some)!
  • Lastly, the silver candlesticks.  These are in pretty consistant rotation at the Goodwill. I’m slowly filling my mantel with all sorts of mis-matched silver.
Alright, there you have it – Heidi’s Thrift Store Steals for the day (believe me, there are more to come)!  What about you?  What are your favorite bargains?  – I know you have one or two…. Do tell!