Thursday, December 30, 2010

Monday, December 13, 2010

Rum balls
photo by James Ballantine


Serves/Makes: 48


3 1/4 cups crushed vanilla wafers
3/4 cup confectioners' sugar
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
3 tablespoons light corn syrup
1 1/4 cup rum

In a large bowl, stir together the crushed vanilla wafers, 3/4 cup confectioners' sugar, cocoa, and nuts. Blend in corn syrup and rum. Shape into 1-inch balls, and roll in additional confectioners' sugar, OR crushed pecans, almonds, or shredded coconuts. Store in an airtight container for several days to develop the flavor. Roll again in confectioners' sugar before serving.

Submitted by Linda Lee Harper of South Carolina

Monday, November 22, 2010

Knitted Mohair Boucle Cowl
Beautiful scarf! Check out more items at

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Thanksgivingphoto by Peter Roome

Happy Thanksgiving! It's a time to enjoy that favorite dish, spend time with loved ones...and reminisce of childhood memories. Partaking in the festivities, catching up with family and friends, and bowing your head in prayer are all a part of what makes this day so special. What more, there's the taste test...the famous apple pie, pumpkin bread...and the infamous turkey and stuffing. Let us know what your favorite recipe is; we'd love to hear about your traditions!

Friday, March 19, 2010

Claudia Finn: Artist and Inspiration

"Growing by the Fence", 20 x 24 oil on canvas, by Claudia Finn

"New York Flower Market", by Claudia Finn

the streets filled with a beauty
yellow sunflowers
makes joy memories rise up


Life is full of twists and turns, mostly unexpected, but one things for sure, Claudia Finn, Virginia Beach Artist, is truly an inspiration to many. Her heart is truly for the Lord and for helping, listening and caring about people. Claudia loves new beginnings and the Lord has blessed her with a place to share her art with others. This is important to Claudia as she says, " communicates important messages. When I paint a landscape I want to convey the beauty of God's creation. When I interpret scripture in my painting, I seek to bring attention to the Word. The visual word pictures of the Bible are overwhelmingly beautiful." We asked Claudia to share a few words about herself and this is what she had to say.

"The Mighty One, God, the Lord speaks and summons the earth from the rising of the sun to the place where it sets." Psalm 50 That just makes me want to paint. My hope is that in my life and talents I will give honor to Jesus Christ. I want my art to remind people of what is important.

I started writing a blog about my art this past year, . In fact that is where I came to be aware of Inkwell Alley. I was always looking for interesting blogs when I first started and I remember Inkwell Alley leaving kind, encouraging comments.

I was born in Norfolk Virginia and now live in its neighboring city with my family (my husband Pat, daughter Kate, and son David). Virginia Beach offers so much diversity. Inspiration is everywhere here. I think this is why even though I have lived here all my life I still love it.

"The Woman at the Well",
inspired by "John 4", 36 x 48,
oil on canvas,
by Claudia Finn

We asked Claudia:
>> Do you remember your first childhood art project?
I remember making a stuffed horse and learning the stitches in first grade. The teacher (Mrs. Wickers) called me her "little horse girl". Encouragement is best when it is sweet like that.

>> Did you go to school for any formal art training? I went to Old Dominion University and earned a degree in Art Education. I taught art in high school before we had children. I also often take classes in anything that interests me at local colleges and art centers when I can.
I love the challenges put forth by good teachers.
>> What is your area of expertise? I love to paint in various styles, and create works in groups of series bound together by subject and similar style.
I will show you three of them here with examples of my love of Impressionism, collage. and scripture interpretation.
>> What is your favorite concept to depict? I think I love depicting the scripture and it's expression has come out in my approaches to painting.
>> What color best describes you? I hope GREEN because it represents growth and newness to me.

"Boardwalk Palms", 20" x 60", collage, by Claudia Finn

>> Do you have to be in a certain mood or location to practice your art? I see art as a process, if my tools are not nearby I am continually enjoying looking for inspiration with my eyes or camera.

"work in progress", each panel 20 x 60, collage, by Claudia Finn

>> How did your gallery come about?
Where is it located?
My gallery, Claudia Finn Studio is located in the heart of Virginia Beach in Pembroke Mall's Art Space. I was encouraged by a couple of friends to check out what Pembroke mall was doing with a wing known as Art Space. It has a unique collection of galleries/art studios and classes with the purpose of promoting the visual and preforming arts in Hampton Roads, Virginia. There are five art galleries, a ballet company and and two theater groups open now!
This all has happened within the past 6 months! I love the potential for further growth!
>> What would your life be without art? I know that art is a joy and I see it as a one form of expression, I also love poetry and music. I love the forms of expression I explore and love that God has given me ways to think and say thi
ngs with them. I would miss them because they are such a part of the way I interpret my life.
>> How is your art/art gallery different from others? I think the fact that it is a place that I paint in all the time makes it unique. I love the work of the other artists on the walls! Every one's art together creates a great place.

Left: "Dragonflies and Lilies", 24 x 36, watercolor and collage, by Claudia Finn

>> Here is your randomness for the day: What snack do you turn to for a midday boost? There is nothing better for a healthy boost than Tropical Smoothie smoothies. My absolute favorites are those with intense flavor. Pomegranate Plunge, Blimey Limey and Cranberry Crush with extra Cranberry are the best. Every now and then I want to go back to my elementary school cafeteria with one that tastes like a dreamcycle called Orange Dream!

"Refreshment" 20 x 24, oil on canvas, by Claudia Finn

Inspired by the scripture, "I will pour water on the thirsty land." Isaiah 44:3. This painting represents to me the scripture verse, "Water will gush forth in the wilderness and streams in the desert. The burning sand will become a pool, the thirsty ground bubbling springs... The ransomed of the Lord will return. They will enter Zion with singing; everlasting joy will crown their heads. Gladness and joy will overtake them, and sorrow and sighing will flee away." Isaiah 35:6-7,10


Don't forget to visit where you'll not only find inspirational artword but also beautiful music. So if you happen to be near the Virginia Beach area, stop in to visit Claudia Finn Studio. The hours are by appointment on Monday-Wednesday and open to the public on Thursday 5-8 p.m., Friday 5-8 p.m., Saturday 12-6 and Sunday 12-5. "Claudia Finn, you are making a difference and Inkwell Alley congratulates you; May God Bless You in all that you do."

Friday, March 12, 2010

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Sashay Magazine is proud to have a partnering voice with Lee Ann Brown, owner of Glamour Survival Guides'! She lives in Birmingham, Alabama and is passionate about helping others. Lee Ann say, "I really do believe that you can live a glamorous life of beauty & excitement, filled with love of family and community, anywhere."

After traveling for several years modeling in places like Atlanta, Miami, New York and Japan, Lee Ann found that the schedule and lifestyle wasn't right for her. She is now a mom, wife and entrepreneur, and still has a busy life but understands what it means to be a 21st Century Women. One who has found a way to balance her life's endeavors, care for her family while still being able to take time for herself.

You can find Lee Ann's page, The Glamorous Life at Her website is and she also has a great blog where she highlights Birmingham.

I hope you will visit I'm sure you are a "Rugged, Real and Refined -- 21st Century Women!"

Monday, February 8, 2010

Contest Coming Soon

Sashay Magazine is going to be having a contest soon! Sign up for the "Catwalk" newsletter on to get upcoming details. Sashay Magazine is for the "Rugged, Real and Refined--women of 21st Century".

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Inkwell Alley Want To Know

The most important part of any journey is keeping in touch with the people you care about. Sometimes that means keeping up even when time doesn't seem to be on your side. Have you ever felt like you aren't doing enough, that you don't have time to twitter that special tweet, check in on your favorite blogger friends or text that friend you haven't seen in awhile. These are all symptoms of the 21st Century, and there's no pill for that. It's sure to make you feel defeated at times. I mean how many times has it been after 12:00 pm on Friday before you even got dressed for the day because you were busy with "follow friday" and you still hadn't gotten to @tweets, @twitterfriend, @so_many_tweets_not_enough_time, @they_followfriday_me_I_followfriday_them, @RT, @specialtweet, @yata...

So next time you feel this way, don't dismay. Just take a deep breath and realize that we are feeling the same way. I think with time, we will all understand that our virtual life is much more understanding that our real life. I mean, my water got shut off today, because I forgot to pay it...OOPS.
June Isewcute ,
adebanji alade ,
Crystal Kneller ,
Jenn ,
Moonangelnay ,
Paloma ,
Renée Gandy ,
Brenda ,
Alisa ,
Rose Aune ,
Honor Martinez ,
Steph Bowe ,
Horrible Sanity Danielle Buffardi : Freelance Writer, Editor, Proofreader, & Resume Service ,
Kristen Evans ,
Jan Markley ,
Kathleen Eidson ,
Paloma Chaffinch ,
Groovepainter micah bariteau ,
Lois Eighmy, Karen Amanda ,
Katie (quixotic) ,
FictionGroupie ,
Jamie House,
angela m suor ,
"Absolutely Small" ,
Rebecca Lynch ,
Patti Stafford ,
Nomad Crafts ,
kismet1990 ,
Suzanne ,
Suzanne's etsy shop ,
Jen ,
ismoyo ,
BoutiqueKarma ,
Ellie Cate's ,
Sara Hopp ,
WhatOnceWas ,
Leah, , "Thats Pretty" ,
Sheri ,
Mystey Artist
Debbie in Nashville ,
Jemmie211! ,
Stil Direktörü ,
Retrothreadz ,
Artist Richard ,
boylerpf , , Patti Trostle , JoAnne ,
A.M. Lindsey,
"weloveourdogs" ,
J. Francis, ,
Meg Huggins,
Paperwerks ,
Pegg ,
mahmood ,
Lazy Writer ,
I just want to tell ya that I still check in on ya and love to see what you're doing! :) If I've overlooked anything or if you have updated links, let me know. Keep me posted with your updates.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Sashay Magazine Takes A Leap in the 21st Century

Monica Dutcher and Audrey S. have partnered up, and we hope that you will help us to promote our dream. We have just launched an online magazine on February 1, 2010. It's called

The Sashay Way: No matter where they live, women can be inspired by one another and united in the building of character, mind and body. Sashay Magazine is based out of South Carolina, but our voice is universal. Our voice is your voice. Our journey is your journey. And, as we sashay around the United States looking for story ideas, new perspectives and different ways of living, our magazine will truly be the heartbeat of the 21-st century woman.

Sashay Magazine is a lifestyle magazine for "Real, Rugged and Refined Women" ages 25-55+ who are affluent and engaged in their world as a 21ster, that is, as an individual who utilizes technology and the spirit of independence to successfully manage work, travel, pursuit of dreams, personal time and family. Sashay Magazine is not feminist, rather, our articles are a platform for both conservative and liberal voices. While Sashay Magazine does publish reflective and personal essay-type pieces, we are also interested in incorporating research into our features and departments.

Thank you so much! We hope you will be a part.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Sashay Magazine is Launched

Sashay Magazine is launched. The website is Yes, it was a dream; a dream come true.

We hope you will visit as we plan to expand and bring Inkwell Alley to a new level. We want you to be a part, and look forward to developing a rapport. These days, trials and tribulations, stress and even the unknown, make us think that we cannot prosper or move forward with a dream. You can do it. Remember, it's not who you are but what you can become! So I hope you'll visit us at sashay magazine. Let us know if you have any story ideas. We are also looking for people interested in writing. Our main goal is to build relationships, help others to achieve their goals, and to support and promote your dream.

If you have any questions, email me at

About Us

Two cubicle neighbors with pizzazz and their own personal, but highly similar, set of of innate complexities find refuge in this alley of creative musings. So pull up a chair, join in, as we--artist and writer--share our spin on the world, art, literary pursuits and the seemingly miniscule, daily occurrences that become larger than life.

WHAT'S NEW: Follow Friday!

Feature Friday--Each Friday! Inkwell Alley is a growing neighborhood and every Friday, one of our followers will be featured with a short bio about their work. We love to make our avid readers feel at home, so relax and enjoy reading about who's springin' up on Inkwell Alley. Don't miss as we continue to update our blog with many new features. Monica and Sbass hope you enjoy your walk down Inkwell Alley! >>Last Week: karilynnlove >>Previous Weeks: June, also known as Isewcute


Vintage Petals