Friday, December 31, 2010


"Live with skillful nonchalance and ceaseless concern."
*Prajnaparamita Sutra
Happy New Year! with love.......

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Citrus Fruit

I added three pairs of "Clementines" to the etsy menu today, a bit of California sunshine :)

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

The In Between Week

This in between has been so lovely, quiet.

*view from my bedroom yesterday morning, rise and shine indeed.
I have been enjoying starting back to work, catching up, sending notes, trying to remember just what took place during that whirl wind, perching now.

The weather has been in between too....sun
*Coopers Hawk yesterday in an agave

then rain....

I'm loving it all!

Monday, December 27, 2010

Billy Collins

Shoveling Snow With Buddha

In the usual iconography of the temple or the local Wok
you would never see him doing such a thing,
tossing the dry snow over a mountain
of his bare, round shoulder,
his hair tied in a knot,
a model of concentration.

Sitting is more his speed, if that is the word
for what he does, or does not do.
Even the season is wrong for him.

In all his manifestations, is it not warm or slightly humid?
Is this not implied by his serene expression,
that smile so wide it wraps itself around the waist of the universe?
But here we are, working our way down the driveway,
one shovelful at a time.

We toss the light powder into the clear air.
We feel the cold mist on our faces.
And with every heave we disappear
and become lost to each other
in these sudden clouds of our own making,
these fountain-bursts of snow.

This is so much better than a sermon in church,
I say out loud, but Buddha keeps on shoveling.
This is the true religion, the religion of snow,
and sunlight and winter geese barking in the sky,
I say, but he is too busy to hear me.

He has thrown himself into shoveling snow
as if it were the purpose of existence,
as if the sign of a perfect life were a clear driveway
you could back the car down easily
and drive off into the vanities of the world
with a broken heater fan and a song on the radio.

All morning long we work side by side,
me with my commentary
and he inside his generous pocket of silence,
until the hour is nearly noon
and the snow is piled high all around us;
then, I hear him speak.

After this, he asks,
can we go inside and play cards?

Certainly, I reply, and I will heat some milk
and bring cups of hot chocolate to the table
while you shuffle the deck.
and our boots stand dripping by the door.

Aaah, says the Buddha, lifting his eyes
and leaning for a moment on his shovel
before he drives the thin blade again
deep into the glittering white snow.

* Billy Collins

Thursday, December 23, 2010


I was out shopping last night, bent down looking at something on the bottom shelf, lost in my thoughts. A little boy showed up from nowhere and when I turned my head to look at him he simply said Merry Christmas. I replied thank you Merry Christmas to you, as soon as I spoke he was gone. He was an angel and I couldn't stop smiling which I noticed was contagious. Through all the crowds, the rain and waiting in lines one small boy stays in my mind today.
Words have the power to hurt or heal and though these two words get a lot of use this season, we speak them in most sincere way, may your days be filled with family and friends, remembrances of the ones that are gone and the joy on fresh little faces.

"Merry Christmas"
love, The Darrows

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Rain (an understatement)

Each evening before I go to bed I plan to walk in the morning. Each morning I awaken to the sound of rain slapping the patio. For the past several days and evenings we have not had a lull in the weather, the rain never takes even a moments break. This is the kind of rain that feels like someone is dumping a bucket on your head. I'm not afraid to get wet after all I take a shower everyday so this morning I decided today was the day. I have to cross a cement catch basin in order to get up in the hills, all of the runoff from the hills and mountains makes its way to the ocean.
*thought; the water washing over me has a long journey, dripping from my fingertips, filtering though a fishes gill, making its way over a slick shark, lapping on a shore on some little atoll . The mind wanders too

My first challenge though is how to get to higher ground. I choose a hill find a deer trail and head straight up through the mud and the bushes with my trusty dog.

My camera in a front pack under my umbrella, pictures? you say, I'm just trying to stay upright.

This is my lower trail

sage water, oh bottle spray :)

I hooked up to a little road that services the power tower and all I hear is rushing water below. I am now on an island.

I pointed the camera at Banjo to show you my soaked companion screen, change the batteries it replied :(

I put it's annoying carcass in my pack and hauled up the hill.

Water made it's way from crosshatched deer trails forming veins then arteries all teeming downhill. The sound of water sheeting, running, percolating, gravel rolling down now sudden creeks. I saw one kestrel moving on swift wings headed somewhere not hunting. Once I reached the top it really started to pour, Banjo walked close to my side with her eyes barely open.
I saw the crisp white flash of the flickers tail unseated now with our passing, poor bird suddenly navigating through Niagara Falls.
I was not relishing the fact that I had to climb down that hill through the flattened grass, and wet bushes, sinking into gopher holes.

*my name is mud :)

Happy day to all from the drenched trail.
xo Ro and JO

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Merry Christmas from Churro

Churro my little beast of burden made it out to the mailbox yesterday. We didn't know his auntie in New Hampshire was so talented and somehow managed to size his gift absolutely perfectly.

Warm wishes and hay scented kisses to you all, love Churro

Monday, December 20, 2010

Greetings From the Valley of the Rain

This was the weekend we have all been working towards. We were ready but lately every show we've planned has been a challenge due to uncooperative weather. I joked, when would you like it to rain we'll plan our winter show. If it's spiking heat you desire we can schedule our spring show, STILL, we had a wonderful crowd and was fun wondering just who was hiding under that hood or umbrella, big smiles and hugs after the disguises were shed.

The first day was damp, drizzly.............

.....uncomfortable but doable.
Katheryn (the knitter)

Snacks under the eaves and the reason children like to visit :)

Pheuff, nobody, slipped.....there's always that to worry about

Day two was the worst, were experiencing record braking rain and on Sunday it just poured the entire day, rain is expected til Wednesday. Eric had the idea to consolidate, hunker in his garage studio and play store. The cedar pottery barn in the back is the only other destination keeping it simple. We were actually surprised at how many shoppers came out in the deluge.

We're keeping our store set up for the rest of the week if you missed the show we are still here for gifts, send an email and schedule an appointment. I will spend the day reclaiming my house, sizing jewelry and giving thanks to all of you dear friends for your wonderful support. THANK YOU!

* Don't forget to watch the total lunar eclipse tonight if you're lucky enough to enjoy clear night skies.
Happy winter solstice Xo, Ro

Thursday, December 16, 2010


We are experiencing a rain pattern or a quiet drizzle really, everything glistens now freshly bathed.

Turn your faces down and get a good wash behind your ears.

We had to resort to plan b, c and d last year because of rain and this year will be the same.
* I try and get pictures but I usually only snap a few before the crowd arrives and I get vacuumed into the vortex.

Our work is stacking up

Eric has quite a stockpile of gorgeous pieces

I always provide a nice selection of earrings and I made some beautiful one of a kind pieces that I won't preview here, you have to come and look.

Last year winding down with Bryce's sweet tunes.


See you in the rain..............actually there's 30% chance of clear.
xo The Darrows

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

A Prayer for Wednesday

For the Artist at the Start of the Day

May morning be astir with the harvest of night;
Your mind quickening to the eros of a new question,
Your eyes seduced by some unintended glimpse
That cut right through the surface to a source.

May this be a morning of innocent beginning,
When the gift within you slips clear
Of the sticky web of the personal
With its hurt and its hauntings,
And fixed fortress corners,

A morning when you become a pure vessel
For what wants to ascend from silence,

May your imagination know
The grace of perfect danger,

To reach beyond imitation,
And the wheel of repetition,

Deep into the call of all
The unfinished and unsolved

Until the veil of the unknown yields
And something original begins
To stir toward your senses
And grow stronger in your heart

In order to come to birth
To a clean line of form,
That claims from time
A rhythym not yet heard,
That calls space to
A different shape.

May it be its own force field
And dwell uniquely
Between the heart and the light

To surprise the hungry eye
By how deftly it fits
About its secret loss.

*by John O'Donohue
contributed by Songbird
* My own hungry eye is feasting on wonderful day in shades of gray and drizzle.
Sending love your way, Ro

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

My Stars

Before I went to bed last night I saw Jupiter getting chummy with the moon as it's done so lately.

I set my alarm for three this morning , at three a.m. both Jupiter and the moon. (Jupiter has a name does our moon?) were well off to the west and the big dipper spun directly above. I'm not a friend to this hour. I only know it in a hospital emergency room under florescent lighting or some other unpleasant event. This time of year we live in shifts, I take the early one and Eric works all night. When I got out of bed he was already watching the sky inside the house looking through the big glass windows. I suited up, polar fleece jacket over my nightgown, sweat pants, Eric's down jacket and mukluks and went outside.
Meteors teemed across that sky some with tails that crossed the entire sky, some sketched short bold strokes. Owl hunted on silent wings, the ones that croon in the giant cedars, were up overhead, so low at times I could make out primary and secondary feathers with my new night eyes. As I watched the owl a meteor burned out in the distance right behind it. Eric had long since gone to bed and I was so excited I woke him back up. Some moments are beautiful beyond belief and almost appear corny being overused by people like Steven Speilberg, but this was not a corny movie and I disliked that my mind hung on that thought and I wished I had never seen a movie and become corrupted.
At 5:30 Venus was so bright in the south-eastern horizon I was able to shoot the picture above, hand held with 45 magnification. Between 5:30 until............

the the sky became pink I was easily presented with one every second or so. What an amazing night and I'm so thankful for being part of it.
Did anyone else partake?

My etsy shop is threadbare and I just can't help it. We've sent out nearly 1000 invitations for our annual Christmas show here this weekend and we have all been working non stop. I still take time in the morning for my walks with Banjo, then in the studio like a monk til the sun sets. I love my work, my quiet space often lost in my thoughts or filled with good music maybe a play streamed on my computer.
Eric and I hope to be adding new work next week. Til then hi ho it's off to work I go.

Have a lovely day all, xo Ro

Monday, December 13, 2010

The Light

This is the morning of my drawing and I wanted to find a special place and bring you along.

Surveying his grassy kingdom

I like this spot, the ponderosa pines add a nice scent to the view.

I brought my little pack that I bought in Fairbanks when my son was three and I remember we also bought "The Stinky Cheese Man" a hilarious children's book, a spoof on the gingerbread man that made me laugh to the point of tears. Bryce never got it, I don't think many kids know stories like Henny Penny or The Gingerbread man, I digress.

So It's time to find out who will be the winner.



I stripped almost 200 leaves from my lemonade sumac last evening and wrote all your names on them.

There you go.....

enjoy the view.


Banjo tried to look regal but...

while I was drawing she was snuffling gopher holes and munching on grass.

Thank you all for your friendship, support and kindness.

I'll grow up tomorrow, maybe.
*I couldn't resist this hairy arm pit shot

Things are waking up

Meadowlarks buried in deep grass heave themselves suddenly in great numbers as you pass causing a heart thumping jolt, better than coffee in the morning.

Have a wonderful day and remember.....You are the light of the world.
xo Ro and Jo