August 25, 2016

Amazing Handcrafted Mystery Rings by Secret Wood

Each of these rings, handcrafted by Secret Woodholds within it 
...the floor of the deepest ocean, 
...the surface of another planet,
...or a miniature fantasy world.
Made of wood and resin, every one is unique. 
Absolutely amazing!

Here's the Secret Wood
website and Facebook page.

Images used with direct permission from Secret Wood.

August 23, 2016

Snapshots of Disney World's Hollywood Studios

Tons of fun to be had at Hollywood Studios in Disney World.
I was especially proud of myself for riding the Rock 'n' Roller Coaster
not once, but twice. Screamed the entire time. Twice.
Also went on the Tower of Terror and left my stomach at the top.

Before we continue, I must tell you that I celebrated my birthday
in Hollywood Studios this year! I was given a special button
to wear and was wished a Happy Birthday by Disney
cast members all day long! Now, that was fun!

Part of our gang breakfasting at the Caribbean Beach Resort's food court.
Fueling up to take on another Disney day!

Hubby & I arrive and pose with the Chinese Theater behind us.

The 50's Prime Time Cafe -fun decor & fantastic milkshakes!

Here's our family group of 15 enjoying our Disney World week together!

Disney Sweethearts

August 19, 2016

Hand-embroidered Hoop Art by Gulush Threads

Kristen Gula of Gulush Threads is one talented lady.
She hand-embroiders bold flowers in bright colors.
Loveliness galore!

Custom orders are welcomed for the perfect personalized gift.
Think wedding dates or birth stats for a newborn baby.
I especially like her script initial creations.

Take a look at Kristen's fantastic hoop art!

You DIY stitchers can purchase patterns 
or join the "Pattern of the Month Club."

More, more, more of Gulush Threads!

Images used with direct permission from Kristen Gula.

August 17, 2016

African Zulu Telephone Wire Baskets at Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge

After dining at the Animal Kingdom Lodge's Boma restaurant,
 these colorful woven baskets caught my eye.
A testimony to Disney's devotion to all-encompassing resort theming,
this display was surrounding, of all things, a restroom sign.
Of course I had to take both a closer look...and some photos.
These very cool baskets were made of telephone wire by 
talented South African Zulu artisans. Such craftsmanship! 

Now, I have a story to tell of my own telephone wire artistry!
When I saw these baskets, I immediately had a warm and fuzzy flashback 
to my childhood days, of times spent with my best buds Shelley and Sue.
Their dad had worked at Bell Telephone and gifted them with the
"treasure" of a spool of multi-colored telephone wire.
Being the crafty kids that we were, we spent hours
cutting, twisting and twirling the wire into kooky, curlicued rings.
Tiffany's had nothing on us.

I was curious to see what I could find online that resembled our rings.
This pic from Pinterest, showing the first stage of the ring, 
was the only thing I could find. Our next step was to
tightly curl each of the wires into a cluster and voila!

Just one of the tons of good times we girls had back in the day. 
Before video games & cell phones, naturally.

And yes, one can definitely see the beginnings of 
my artistic creativity that eventually led to my 
handcrafted jewelry shop, Paisley Beading
(Shameless plug. Ha!)

If you love Disney World, check out more of my Disney blog posts:
Snapshots of Disney World's Magic Kingdom
Snapshots of Disney World's Hollywood Studios
Snapshots of Disney World's EPCOT
Snapshots of Disney World's Animal Kingdom
All About Disney's Animal Kingdom Tree of Life
All About Animal Kingdom Lodge's African Ijele Mask

August 15, 2016

Chelsea's Flowercrowns Does Seashell Crowns, Too!

The blossom bedecked crowns by Chelsea's Flowercrowns are beautiful enough.
Her seashell crowns, however, take things up to a new level.
Or should we say "down" to a new level?
Down to the depths of the oceans, to the treasure trove of Triton, that is.
These iridescent, opalescent, mermaid-escent crowns are just gorgeous!
Chelsea's creations dazzle with shells, gems, jewels and a bit of Bohemian flair.

Back to the blossoms. I'm showing off a flowercrown as well.

Where to find Chelsea's Flowercrowns:

Images used with direct permission from Chelsea Shiels.

>>>>>My 600th Blog Post!<<<<<

August 12, 2016

All About Disney's Animal Kingdom Tree of Life

Disney World's Animal Kingdom has an easily-recognizable icon: its Tree of Life.
Because it's the centerpiece of the park, it's convenient to use 
as the central landmark around which we can always get our bearings.
(Especially for directionally-challenged ME.)

From afar, the tree looks real, but it's actually man-made,
yet another wonder created by those amazing Disney artists & imagineers.
It's strong enough and flexible enough to handle Florida's hurricane seasons.
It's an imposing monstrosity of a structure; let's hear some stats.
Height: 145'
Span of Branches: 165' 
Width of Trunk: 50'
Number of Leaves: Over 100,000

Yes, we're impressed. But this is only half of the story.
"Carved" into the trunk, branches and roots of the tree are over 300 birds & animals.
Look closely and you'll see how they're entwined with one another.
They're not meant to be to scale; they're artistically designed as part of the tree.
Included are a peacock, a meerkat, a hippo, and a bison.
A lion, an owl, an iguana and a chimpanzee.
It's fun to try to spot and identify as many as possible!
Take your time, walk all around, and take it all in.

One thing is for sure: no photograph I've seen does justice to this tree.
The majesty of it never seems to be captured.
The depth and details of the animals just can't be fully appreciated.
Alas, I've given it a try. Here are a few of my attempts.

August 10, 2016

Snapshots of Disney World's Magic Kingdom

Welcome to the Magic Kingdom!
For me, there is something magical about it.
Somehow, it's OK to be a kid again. In fact, it's expected.
To think, laugh and act like a kid. No holds barred.
Allowing ourselves to be fully delighted and enchanted.
To be wowed by the beauty and artistry that is the Magic Kingdom.
That transformation in us is where the magic lies.

Balloon vendors offer a festive welcome!

Oh, the charm of Main Street, USA!

Mickey & Minnie are the stars of every Disney parade!

Cousins ready to conquer the Kingdom!

One of the gorgeous mosaics in the pass-through of Cinderella's Castle.
(Stop back for another post on this!)

Don Quixote & Sancho battle the windmill at It's a Small World.

A beautiful tile mosaic of Beauty & the Beast in the lobby of
 the Be Our Guest Restaurant...

...and here's that heavenly ceiling of the ballroom, just like in the movie! Sigh.

I always feel extra-patriotic after visiting The Hall of Presidents;
that's especially so during this 2016 election year.

The stately Liberty Belle riverboat.

The tale of Br'er Rabbit comes alive in Splash Mountain!
(More to come on that...)

Here's a portion of the 90' high mosaic in the 
Grand Canyon Concourse of the Contemporary Resort.
It was designed by Mary Blair, who also was art director for It's a Small World.
You can see the similarities in her child-like characters and style.

To Tiki, or not to Tiki?

This visit was the first time I'd tried a Dole Whip.
After one bite, I cried, "Where have you been all my life?"
Ugggh. I've been missing out all these years.

Always a favorite, one of the classics.

The sun sets on another memorable day in Disney World!

Check out more of my Disney World blog posts:
Snapshots of Disney World's Animal Kingdom
All About Disney's Animal Kingdom Tree of Life
All About Animal Kingdom Lodge's African Ijele Mask
African Zulu Telephone Wire Baskets at Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge
Snapshots of Disney World's EPCOT
Snapshots of Disney World's Hollywood Studios

They were right!
But a thorough Splash Mountain dowsing plus 
my Dole Whip sure helped me to beat the Florida heat!

(With thanks to Laura R. for insisting!)