Introducing Mr. and Mrs. Rawlinson

Screenshot 2019-09-30 11.18.59

Our youngest son and his beautiful bride got married last week!

Chris and Lena have a special teamwork spirit that creates a synergy of their strengths! I am filled with hope and faith for their future happiness and know that whatever life brings to the table, these two can make a masterpiece from the pieces!

Roran James Rawlinson, couldn’t be luckier that to have a new “extra family” to add to his already adoring collection of people who LOVE him!

It’s exciting to watch all 3 of them begin their lives together!

Decorative Painting and Heart of Ohio Tole Convention (HOOT)

The Creative Arts Lifestyle team just returned from the Heart of Ohio Tole Convention, held at the Columbus Convention center.



Creative Arts Lifestyle team ready for Heart of Ohio Tole Painters!


Attending trade shows are a great way to surround yourself with like minded people, but it’s even better when those folks are your friends and customers.  You get to shake hands or hug… giggle and share, demonstrate and inform.


Painting Friends from Upstate NY


The team from HOOT did a great job getting the word out and are always friendly.


Set up is the brutal part…It takes two full days and a team of 6 to get it all ready.


Painted Lace Ornaments and  Amazing Transformed Glasses by Lisa Schall are all part of the creativity at a Decorative Painting Show



Creative Use of one of our Stencils! Designed by Judy Westegaard Jenkins


Of course finding my designing friends for a relaxing glass of wine after set up
is always fun and filled with giggles!

2016-08-14 19.49.17

Veronia, Deb Antonick, Sandy McTier, Tracy Moreau and Patricia Rawlinson


The Husbands that help us are always amazing… we caught them on the last day comparing notes or trying to be our “Hoot Boys” lol…


Always happy to get there…

Always fun to talk with other Decorative Painters!


Happy Painting!



Terrace Gardening/ Hillside solutions

20160506_194926We have 1.75 acres… almost all hilly… When we moved to SE Ohio in 2006 I had no interest in gardening… but greatly enjoyed the Athens Famers Market.

Knowing that food was making terrific travel to get to our markets, I began gardening… my first veggie garden was a square foot design in a raised bed, fast forward 3 years and I have veggie beds everywhere… so much so .. my supportive husband calls it “farming” instead of gardening… LOl…

My DH installed this 40 foot long terraced bed with some barnwood planks, we back filled with composted horse manure and compost.  Last year was my first year, and I harvested  all year  with some cover from frost clothes. Weeding on a hillside is kinda a pain, in the calves… but when you have no flat land… humph… well…. ya gotta do what ya gotta do…  The plan is to install a lower terrace and back fill with bark for more level navigation.


When we first moved here we installed a great stone wall 3 tier terrace… I had installed many awesome shrubs and perennials…. Last year I when I was moaning about not having enough garden space, I looked around with new eyes and saw that I actually had many garden beds… I just wasn’t using them  well… This spring I have added letuces  and herbs as well as Broccoli … Tada… It finally entered my thick scull…. a garden doesn’t just have to be flowers and shrubs…. Yay!…

Dehydrating Celery

image (3)

Amazing how tiny celery is once dehydrated!

My Pantry is stocked with many  dehydrated staples like celery, potatoes, and onions. 

So many times you get in the middle of a cooking session and whoops!@#, the celery is limp, the onions are gone or the potatoes growing!

I grab an extra bag of whatever looks good or has a sale price, dehydrate and store in mason jars, this style of preserving can last for years as long as you keep things cool, dark and dry.

Celery and onions don’t need blanching, but potatoes turn a terrible black color if you don’t blanch them first.


  • Cut in a 1/2″ dice
  • Fill dehydrator trays (I use an Excalibur, because of it’s large capacity and thermometer)
  • Set at lowest temp. ( I like to keep temps under 115 to preserve nutrients)
  • Dehydrate for 12-16 hours until Crisp
  • Add to Soups  or saute dry, re-hydrate to add to tuna salad etc or grind into a powder while dry to make seasoning