Friday, November 25, 2011

Weekly Music Nugget 35

     Ah, the plight of violists....just not enough to do sometimes!  As a tribute to violists I watched this entire video (the guy is cute)....
     The performance would have been enlivened by a good throat tickle (see my post Vocal Percussion

Wednesday, November 23, 2011


    Today I installed a widget which allows me to share Etsy treasuries.  Some will be made by me; those made by others will usually feature an item from my shop.
     Treasuries are collections of up to 16 items chosen by an Etsy account holder; each has a theme reflected in its title.  The shop owner must not feature his /her own items (hence my things only appear in someone else's  treasury). Searching treasuries is a fun way to promote and shop Etsy. 
     My treasury is on the sidebar to the right.  Click on an item to see a bigger photo and listing/price info.  A big picture of the whole treasury is available by clicking on the title in tiny letters immediately above the top row. Today I have posted my Thanksgiving treasury, Over the River and Through the Woods.
     I make a lot of treasuries so I will be changing them often.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Dashees Garden Tuesday 32

    Below is another adventure in hoop art.  I just might change the embroidery on this one.  The wool is from a felted skirt.  I love the colors!

Monday, November 21, 2011


     My latest essential oil love is Whisper by DoTerra.  This blend of essential oils is especially for women and helps balance emotions. It also works with each person's chemistry to create a beautiful fragrance.  When I first put it on the smell is OK; after a few minutes it gets an odor I don't care for and then it changes into something lovely!  At this point I can smell some vanilla bean.  After that it continues to improve until it reminds me of a very expensive perfume.  Yummy.
     Many colognes and perfumes get stinky on me after I wear them for a while.  There are a few that improve as I wear them (lots of Estee Lauder fragrances work on me).  Whisper works like those!  It is not a strong scent.  I will have to do some research and see if it can be mixed with perfume alcohol,  Wonder what will happen then?!
     Oh, this is fun!

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Sunday Musings 10

     I am a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, or Mormons.  I have been following Mitt Romney, a Latter-day Saint, for various reasons, one of which is that I believe him to be a good and honest man.  During this process I have been both saddened and heartened by  reactions to this good man's faith.  They range from well-informed and unbiased to  ignorant and bigoted.  I am particularly amazed at the latter, so much so that I must write some comments.
     I have done some reading about Romney's problems in Iowa because of his religion.  A few statements and quotes by evangelical Iowans reveal a lack of knowledge about Mormonism---or perhaps a refusal to acknowledge it.  I find it very sad that this exists in a society that has the internet library available at the touch of fingertips.
     Perhaps many of these good folks believe what they have heard from their religious leaders and have not felt motivated to find out for themselves what we believe, or perhaps they are scared.  In any case, the ignorance is disturbing.
     One of the quotes I read stated that Mormons believe the Book of Mormon is the word of God but not the Bible. This person went on to say that our president needs to be a man who believes in the Bible, so he can not support Romney.  Hmm.....if Mormons don't believe in the Bible, why I have had so many lessons at church about it?!  And why do I teach it to my class of 6-7 year old children?!  Why am I church...that the Bible is the word of God?!  Yes, we do believe that the Bible contains the word of God.  We believe the Book of Mormon to be a second witness of Jesus Christ, the Bible being our first.  We believe in more scripture, not less.
     When I was learning about the Mormon church I was troubled by the Book of Mormon.  To me it was either really good or really bad; it was evil or it was from God.  No one with Joseph Smith's experience and education could have written it, so it had to have been influenced by God or His opposite. I have found on my own that the  Book of Mormon has nothing but good in it.  It complements the Bible.  How could it be evil?!  That is silly or fearful thinking.
     The best way to form an opinion on the Book of Mormon is to read it yourself.  Any active Latter-day Saint will tell you this.  The missionaries tell you this.  You must find out for yourself....not through a pastor, a well-meaning friend, or even another Mormon.  Read it and pray about it, with an open mind and a sincere desire to know if it is true.
    If you choose not to pursue the Book of Mormon, at least respect the beliefs of those who have read and studied it.  Respect the beliefs of the Latter-day Saints by finding out for yourself what they are.  Don't believe everything you hear or read.  Go to or for correct information.  Exercise faith, not fear.


Friday, November 18, 2011

Weekly Music Nugget 34/ A musiolarant

     The yearly avalanche of Christmas music has begun.  I think it began a couple of weeks ago.  While driving this morning I noticed that there is at least one radio station devoted entirely to Christmas music.  My ears will be tired by December.  By Christmas my ears will have been buried alive for a while. I estimate that it will take almost a year to dig out.  And then........AGAIN.
     I don't get it.  Why must this music begin so early every year?  By Halloween stores are preparing (well, maybe that isn't so bad...takes some attention from Halloween).  By  the third week of November Thanksgiving is merging with Christmas.  I estimate that in another twenty years (or sooner) we will have an end of the year celebration called  Giving Thanks Days.  I think that covers both holidays without offending anyone.  The way will then be clear to forget anything holy about either.
     I hope none of this ever happens.  It is disturbing enough that the word holiday has become the politically correct name for Christmas.  I don't get that at all....seems just silly (ridiculous is a better word).  Don't we have more important issues than what to call Christmas!!??
     What is really offensive is- in my opinion- songs like that stunning ballad "Santa Baby".....!!!!!!!!!  My poor ears.....and brain......!


Monday, November 14, 2011


     Pink.............a new color for me to consider.  My son and his wife are expecting....and it is a GIRL.  My sister had boys.  I had all boys.  My brother had a boy....and then a daughter....who is deceased (I'm not going there tonight)..........a GIRL.  And I will be a first time grandmother........

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Weekly Music Nugger 33/Ameling

     My very favorite singer is Elly Ameling, a Dutch soprano.  I don't think she sings much anymore...I never hear anything about her.  She is in her twilight years..... 
     I first heard her sing at a BYU concert in the seventies.  I thought at the time that I had never heard singing as beautiful as hers!  I still just love to listen to her via my CDs.  I especially like Schubert lieder and have included a link to Nacht und Traume.  Ms. Ameling's version is exquisite.

Friday, November 11, 2011


     I suppose I will try to do a music post tomorrow.  Today I am distracted by a wonderful movie I just saw.  My husband and I just watched the documentary Buck, released this year.
     Buck is about Buck Brannaman, a horse whisperer (he helped with the movie The Horse Whisperer).  Buck himself is the star of the film. He travels the country giving 4 day clinics on horse behavior and training.   He is followed and filmed doing this in the movie, with intermittent discussion of his upbringing, which involved an abusive father.  Buck chose not be like his father.  He gained a special sensitivity to abused animals, horses in particular.  He came to understand them and learned the "horse whisperer" technique of training.  He developed wonderful gifts.
      For lack of better words, I have to say that this man is "special"....very firm, confident, but kind, compassionate and patient.  There is something very familiar about him.  Hard to explain....almost like he is a kindred spirit.  Watch his eyes....he has beautiful eyes.
     If you enjoy horses, take the time to watch this movie (we saw it on Netflix).  It is a beautiful documentary of how someone has overcome a difficult childhood and made his weaknesses into strengths.  Just made me feel good!!

Well....maybe a connection to music......I have been motivated to practice better.....


Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Etsy Fun

     Today I discovered a new activity at  It's a fun way to search items at Etsy.   Scroll down to the section on the lower left called Prototypes. Beneath it click on Taste Test.  The next page is the Prototypes page.  Go to the bottom section and click on Taste Test.
     On this page Etsy will show you a few photographs; if you really like one, click on it and it will begin a collection of your favorites.  More photos show up for you to choose from.  At some point this stops, and Etsy determines your style from your choices.  You will then be shown a large selection of items that match your style (taste).  Not only is it fun, but it is a great way to sort out items that you like.  You can take the test again and see if the result is different.  Great fun.
     If you have an Etsy account, the items you like can be saved there as your favorites.  Great shopping tool for yourself, and someone else if you know his/her taste.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Dashees Garden Tuesday 32

    Another finished wool heart....and not black!  All hearts are wool.  It is lightly stuffed.  A little guy... about 3 3/4" by 3 1/2".

Monday, November 7, 2011

Musioilarose 2/ A good sleep

       Most nights I apply DoTerra's lavender oil on the bottom of my feet before I go to bed. It seems to help me sleep (and it smells good).  I am often up at least once in the night, and sometimes I am restless.  When I use lavender my sleep is deeper.  I might still wake up once or twice, but the sleep before and after is better quality.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Sunday Musings 9

     Today marks the beginning of what I call the November gloomies.  The weather is cool and gray; the beautiful October colors are fading and the last of the leaves will soon fall.
     It's depressing.  I have been fighting this all afternoon.  In thinking about what to post I reviewed some things that I am grateful for, and it is helping. I will share some.
     First, I am thankful for my good husband and children.  They are blessings in my life.  Sometimes I think we look outside our own family for fulfillment, not realizing that what we really want might be right under our noses.  So often the grass looks greener on the other side, so to speak.  Gratitude can shift our perspective.
     Next, I am thankful for my viola, my fourth child.  We have been together for 42 years, and I still enjoy playing.  I am very grateful that my health has been good enough to keep playing challenging music!   I am so grateful that I still have all my fingers and that they work well!  Many people my age do not have this blessing.  I am able to keep plugging along...
     I am grateful for the blessing of increased knowledge and understanding of God and what he wants for me.  I do not know how people survive without this.  It provides reason for what I do; it gives me a foundation on which I can exercise faith.  As I try to become more Christlike, I receive blessings...wonderful blessings that bring me joy.
     Well, I am feeling better.... gratitude works!


Pretty Walls

     My sister and I were girls when the original Barbie doll was created.  We were captivated by  everything Barbie, especially the clothing. We collected and studied each  little pink catalog that came with clothing purchases, and we fantasized about which outfits we wanted.  We had two aunts who spoiled us at holidays and birthdays with our choices.
     In the early years of Barbie it was not easy to find things for her other than clothing, and even that was not available in our hometown.  I remember saving my money for trips to a big city where I might at least find a lesser outfit. Barbie things were not easy to get without WalMarts and the internet!
     We  improvised with what we could find around the house.  For me, sewing was an option and I made lots of Barbie cloths.  When we visited our aunts, they brought out doll furniture that their dad (our grandfather) had made for them.  I think we got doll beds there,too.  Everything just happened to fit our dolls.
     But Barbie had no house. Now...what could we do about that?
     A solution presented itself in time.  Sitting on the bookshelves in our den were shelves of Readers Digest books.  Anyone remember these?  Each volume contained a few condensed versions of books, and each was covered with a different, pretty print (see  My parents had lots of these; I remember perusing them to read  titles and admire covers.
     At some point my sister and I figured out that we could take several of these books and make rooms out of them.  Each wall had a different wallpaper, and they were pretty...and there were many walls to choose from.
     During my fifth grade we went crazy with room additions.  Over the course of a week, I think, our bedroom floor became almost completely covered with Readers Digest book rooms. Our mother would remind us to clean up the mess.  Again and again.  Of course, we were not eager to put the books away.  We had used zillions of them, it seemed.  And so they sat.  And Mother became more and more irritated at us.
     You see, our mother was one of those people who liked to have a neat, clean home, and actually enjoyed housekeeping.  She tried to engage us in it, but we were obstinate.  Especially was tolerable once I finally started, but getting to that point was an ordeal.
     And so it went with our room.  I do not remember what my mother did in the end, but it was bad.  Really bad.  Probably why I don't remember......  I think she finally reached her limit and just "lost it".
     That was the end of Barbie doll rooms, as I recall.  It was fun while it lasted..oh, those cool book covers!!  What a delightful find!  But I leave with a warning.....if your children indulge in something like this, give them a set maximum number of books to use and take digital photos of the mess before it is deconstructed.  That way they can see their mess thirty years later and commiserate with you!!


Saturday, November 5, 2011

Weekly Music Nugget 32/ Healing with Lemongrass

     This is an extra music post because I just can't wait to share an essential oil success story.  It is music-related.
     This week I began practicing after missing a few days because of a trip.  I warmed up slowly (see viola rehab post) , but I jumped into high shifts  too soon each day. I was trying out a new routine, and I learned that I must go back to beginning warm ups with simple exercises in first position.
     My left arm did not like what I did, and rebelled with tennis elbow.  Tennis elbow is one of the problems that drew me to viola rehab, but that was my right arm.  Left elbow was new, and it was pretty bad on Thursday.  By noon my elbow and wrist ached.  And ached.
     I thought, hmmmm...wonder if an essential oil will help...  Earlier this week my husband put lemongrass oil on his achilles tendon  and it has not bothered him since.  True. So Friday morning I combined it with a carrier oil (coconut) in a ratio of about 2 parts lemongrass to one part coconut.  I put it on all the affected areas.  There was quite a bit of relief after a few minutes...maybe about 65-75% less pain.  By noon my arm hurt again so I reapplied it.  This time the relief lasted longer, and I did not reapply it until night.  Reapplied it this morning, and today the pain is pretty much gone.  True story!!!
     By the way, I even practiced yesterday.  Carefully, but I was able to play without much pain.  How cool is that?!
     Love this lemongrass oil. 

Friday, November 4, 2011

Weekly Music Nugget 31/Memories

     When I was a child music was fun.  My mother entertained us with all kinds of music; I twirled and danced to Peter Pan as well as Waltz of the Flowers from the Nutcracker.  She played the piano and sang fun songs.  We listened to musicals and heard tales about my mother's sister who had played the lead in a few.  We listened to childrens' classics and Bozo on the Farm.  My sister and I pretended to sing, often when we were playing dolls.  We imitated our mother's "Big Lady" voice!  We went to concerts prepared, and enjoyed them. We were immersed in holiday music and involved in church choir when older.  My sister and I took ballet lessons, more exposure to music (although that was only fun when we pretended at home...another story).
     We also had musical fun with my Aunt Harriet, who was a multi-talented lady.  She taught rounds to my sister and me on our summer trips to the lake.  She would sing with us.  We loved it!  My mother didn't sing for fun this way...she tried, but it just wasn't the same.  My aunt would also tell us about and then sing excerpts from musicals she put together for her students at a school for handicapped children.  She told us stories about her professional singing experiences, and we were always aware that she continued to take vocal lessons.  Her home had an old piano that sounded pretty awful but was always available to play, which I did when young.
     I credit much of my interest in music to these women who loved and shared it with us.  Such examples...would we could all be like them!!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Farewell, leaves!

     Just a farewell photo to the autumn leaves.  The wind has been blowing hard today, and I am afraid November is really here!  Bye, beautiful colors!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Getting Personal

     In thinking about my blog I realized that I have not been very personal.  Guess I will open up a bit....with some questions and answers.  Maybe like a meme (whatever that is...).

1.What foreign country would you jump at the chance to visit?
     I have many on the list, but only one has been at the top since I was a child.  Ireland.
2.Favorite scent from Bath and Body Shop?
     A discontinued one...Sunripened Raspberry.  To die for!
3.Favorite season
     Usually autumn.  Love autumn air and colors
4.Favorite food indulgence
     hmmmm..too many to list.  Most tempting....the ones  I can't have around...great brownies, classic Toll House chocolate chip cookies, and my butterscotch shortbread cookies.  And Red Velvet cake.  And Kopps vanilla custard (to die for...heavenly). I had better stop...especially since they are all taboo.
5.Favorite flower
     Rose....but I also love pansies!
6.What would you like to have for your last meal on earth, if you could eat...
     My mother's fried chicken, really good garden tomatoes (maybe Brandywine),  home-grown young green beans with bacon and onion,  fried potatoes (LOTS), and one of the desserts above.
7.Ham or turkey for Thanksgiving?
8.What would you live in if you could have your fantasy come true?
    A white cottage near water...lake or sea...and a cottage garden in the front yard.  Brick or stone curved walkway.  Trellised roses.  Pink hollyhocks and roses and lavender and I could go on and on.....Fruit trees and vegee garden in back....and I would have a cat (I would have to be widowed and living alone for that...).  And a warm, cozy library full of good books and music.  Fireplace. And a gardening shirt with cabbage roses on it...something I like but not in style....lots of silk, too.....oh, this is getting good....
9.Childhood dream?
     To marry, live in the country in a tri-level house, teach violin and raise horses.  Children were always an appendage (that changed when I became LDS). I was not one of those girls who liked mothering and babysitting.
10.Favorite car
     I can almost always spot my fav....Jaguar.  The old ones.....very cool!!!!!!!

Musioilarose 1/ What the Tinman Needed

     Most of us know that the Tinman in The Wizard of Oz wanted a heart.  He thought he needed a heart.  In the end he discovered that he had a heart.
     He really needed something else.  He could not even communicate much without this, although we hear him try in the movie.  Oil.  He needed a good oil treatment.
     There are many analogies here, but my focus is just oil.  Essential oils, in my case.  I have been learning about these and trying out a few, and I am very pleased with the results.
      Positive experiences are accumulating, but I will just share a couple now.  This morning my husband asked me if I had a suggestion for something he could put on his Achilles heel that has been bothering him.  I did some research and suggested lemongrass oil.  He applied a drop, and within seconds he had relief. 
     Yesterday I came down with a mild tummy bug.  Today I tried peppermint oil.  I mixed two drops in my breakfast water ........WHOA!!  Not only did it help my tummy feel better, but I have felt all morning like the center of my torso is Candy Cane Lane.  It has a certain peppermint glow... very pleasant!  And a drinking glass is an absolute delight to sniff.  I just took another whiff.....AHHHHH....sweet peppermint with no carbs and calories.
     Well, I must share the company that has furnished me with such delights.  DoTerra (long O) is the name, and here is the link  The company sells top of the line essential oils.  Good stuff.  I highly recommend them. 
     Every time I think about or try an oil I feel good about it.  I hate sales pitching...not my thing...but I am pursuing this (I am in the process of learning how to be an independent distributor) because I continually feel so good about it.  It is as if there is an open door for me to go through ( by the way, if you want to purchase any oils, please go through me).  I think it will improve my health, both emotional and physical.
     Well, enough.  I have a plan to blog about oil experiences one day a week....not sure which day yet...but this week it is Wednesday!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Dashees Garden Tuesday 31

     I have just about finished my gray and white hoop art piece.  Oh, this was enjoyable to make!  I am still working on the back.  To finish that I trimmed the wool to a little over an inch and glued it to the inside of the frame.  I then inserted a firm cardboard circle that snugly fit into the back.  I am not happy with it so I will be making a new one.  I might cover it with cotton...and then, maybe not...
     Here it on it to enlarge.  The center of the vintage crocheted flower is filled with gray embroidery floss French knots, like on the leaf.  Tiny white beads were sewn into the ring around it.  This will be going into my Etsy shop this week.

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In addition to being a violist, I am a wife and mother (three sons). I dabble in writing, handwork, sewing and photography.