Tag Archives: artists

Friday:) A Few Artist Friends and Some Firemen

8 Jun

“All I ask is of life is that I can sing and dance and share my art and writing and baking and cooking and joy with the world. That’s a lot of ands. And, that’s OK.”

~Toni Armenta Andrukaitis


Wow! A crazy busy day. The first Friday of the month is a pretty busy one. I got up and fed and walked the dog. Ran to the store.(Actually I drove, but you know what I mean.) I needed some food for the feast at Towne Creek, where I volunteer teaching art. I was bringing hot dogs, salad, chips, peach pie, snickers ice cream with a side of cool whip, and a pineapple ginger ale punch.

I was roaming the aisles when I bumped into several of my firemen friends from station 9. When I rounded the corner, I raised up both arms and said, “Station 9!” I heard a resounding rely, “Miss Toni!” I checked out their cart to see what they were making for dinner. I told them that next time I make a big batch of pasta, I’m going to bring some over.

When I got home from the store, I took the dog out again, then went for my walk, trying to squeeze in some walking time before Towne Creek at 2. I got in about 2 miles. Mr. Mike got home early, so I returned Bella (the dog), packed up my car with all the food and art supplies and scooted over to Towne Creek Senior Apartments.

I just grabbed a lot of stuff and I always just wing it as to what project we’re going g to work on. We always have fun.

Helene has been coming with me to help, and today, she really put in a full day with gluing, cutting, prepping, cooking, and cleaning up.

I decided after art group to go over to the country dance at 7pm at the senior center. I was already exhausted and my feet were killing me from standing all day and running around since 9am. But, I love music and I love to dance. So, off I went. Oh, let me see on my phone how many steps I took today. (And that’s just when my phone was in my pocket.) yikes! 16,658 steps or 7.4 miles.

Yep! A busy day, but a good one. Now, for my Friday night Black Russian. Let me go fix it now. Yep, now to put my feet up and enjoy the rest of my evening. Cheers!!! Happy Friday my friends.

Saturday:) Celebrating 60 With Blynda Christian

19 May

Wow! It took me sixty years to look this good!


(But, it applies to Miss Blynda)


Today is Blynda Christian’s birthday, and she had a HUGE TINY birthday celebration at her house. I’ll explain. Blynda, a very talented artist, invited her friends and family to celebrate her Big Fat 60th birthday and Tiny Art Show by creating a tiny 4×4 piece of artwork to display at her party. Seeing as she has a zillion friends, there were a zillion fabulous tiny works of art displayed throughout her house.

The theme was “tiny”, so there were tiny desserts and food, like tiny tacos, tiny tostadas, tiny cakes, etc.

Each tiny canvas or artwork was a masterpiece. Blynda has a talented family, and so many talented friends.

Everyone had a great time, drank tiny glasses of wine, ate tiny food, and also created more tiny artwork at the kitchen table.

Oh, and there were the tiny 12 Aposticle Sticks by Amanda Wallace.

It was a HUGE TINY celebration, and I’ll have to say, 60 never looked so good. Happy birthday Blynda, and here’s to another 60. 🍷

Thursday:) The Most Creative and Fun Event of the Year: McKinney Empty Bowls 2019

17 May

“If you can help the less fortunate and have a blast at the same time, that’s a win-win.”

~ Toni Armenta Andrukaitis


McKinney Empty Bowls 2019 has been an entire year in the making. Artists, potters, artisans, volunteers and endless hours of effort went into this amazing event. I was overwhelmed by the community support and participation. There were hundreds of hand-crafted donated bowls that visitors had the opportunity to chose from. Their entry ticket allowed them to pick out any event bowl, and they could purchase additional bowls for $15 each. I saw people walking around with their arms laden with purchases.

the silent auction and celebrity bowls were a big hit, and a big money maker. I was honored that a couple of my bowls were featured.

I’m not sure what the final bid was on my bowl, but I did bid on it myself early on. Hopefully it went to a good home and made a little money for Community Lifeline.

Visitors were able to sample so many wonderful soups and desserts, pick out a bowl, and meet artists as they strolled along outside and inside MPAC.

It seems like every year the event gets bigger and better. I can’t wait to see how much they raised this year. I’m honored to be just a little teeny-tiny part of this wonderful endeavor to feed the hungry in our community.

Here’s the bowl I picked out… the brown one in front. I placed it on my piano with some of the others I’ve chosen over the years.

You can give without loving, but you cannot love without giving.~

Amy Carmichael

Tuesday:) Two More Days ‘Til Empty Bowls

15 May

β€œOne of the greatest feelings in the world is knowing that we as individuals can make a difference. Ending hunger in America is a goal that is literally within our grasp.”

~Jeff Bridges


Our entire community has been gearing up for this year’s Empty Bowls event for months. This Thursday is the big day.

Local artists, potters, teachers, students and volunteers have been crafting creating, glazing and painting bowls all year long.

Empty Bowls is an annual event hosted by St. Peter’s Episcopal Church to increase awareness of hunger in McKinney. Your ticket will help feed the hungry in our community, and you will be able to sample wonderful soups, breads, and desserts from local restaurants. You will also be able to pick out a handcrafted souvenir bowl as a reminder of the bowls that remain empty and the people that often go hungry. Proceeds benefit Community Lifeline Center.

Help us fight the hunger cycle right here in McKinney!

See you in downtown McKinney at the McKinney Performing Arts Center,

6-8 p.m. on Thursday, May 16

Here are a few of the bowls my senior art friends from Towne Creek painted and donated.

I was surprised and honored when friends told me that my picture was in the Community Impact Newspaper.

One of my donations is being featured in the silent auction. I loved painting this one of a kind piece.

Here are more amazing bowls created by local potters and artists.

I hope to see you Thursday evening on the Square. It will be fun and will be helping a great cause.

Saturday:) “Insight Out Jazz Art” at The Cove

12 May

“Creativity and insight almost always involve an experience of acute pattern recognition: the eureka moment in which we perceive the interconnection between disparate concepts or ideas to reveal something new.”

~Jason Silva


Fred “Jazz” Roland’s vibrant expression of color, contour and concert was featured this weekend at The Cove. Helene and I stopped in to enjoy the colorful art exhibit and smooth sultry music performed by The Tribe.

Photography by Brandy Roland was also featured. Brandy’s descriptive black and white New York street scenes were very powerful.

A shout out to my friend Bob Romans


If you missed the show, the art show will be open one more day, Sunday, May 12 from 6-9 at The Cove. 402 N Tennessee, just north of the McKinney Square.

Saturday on the Square:) A Fiesta of Culture and Folklore

5 May

β€œI hold that a strongly marked personality can influence descendants for generations.”

― Beatrix Potter


My friend, Theresa Johnston had her art show at The Cove this weekend. Theresa is not only a talented artist, but a beautiful human being, with a loving caring heart. Her artwork depicts her colorful and flamboyant Hispanic heritage. So many of the paintings were very familiar to my own Hispanic background,

All of the paintings had an interesting family background story from Theresa’s childhood and life. There are so many traditions, customs, and superstitions in every family, and the Hispanic heritage is one of the most interesting and colorful.

Here I am with my blind date. Get it? Blind date? (No face or eyes)

I asked Theresa if she had a painting of the very famous or infamous CHANCLA. She did not, but that’s a very popular Mexican joke. Mamasitas everywhere would always take off their chancla and threaten their children with bodily harm. You’d either get smacked with it or thrown at you. It didn’t hurt, but made the point that mamma was really mad.

It was a lovely art show and so good to see friends and wonderful artwork. It made me think of my own mother, and how she would have loved seeing the artwork.

Sunday Sermon and Arts In Bloom on the Square

15 Apr

“Only he who believes is obedient and only he who is obedient believes.”

~Dietrich Bonhoeffer


Saturday was a completely miserable rainy dreary washout kinda day. Today, nothing but crystal blue skies, sunshine and beautiful weather. What a difference a day makes.

It was a pleasure to greet before Mass today. Mr. Jerry was back from his trip to Israel, so he and Helene saved my seat, on this solemn Palm Sunday. Today’s Gospel reading was the long story that began with the Last Supper and continued through all the tragic passions, betrayal, trials and ending in the crucifixion and death of Jesus. I’ve heard this Gospel a million times, but I always get misty at the end.

The part that really spoke to me was when Jesus was praying alone at the Mount of Olives and He asked…

“Father, if you are willing, take this cup away from me; still, not my will but yours be done.”

My take on it… sometimes we are given a heavy burden to carry, and often the cross we are asked to carry seems unbearable. Even Jesus asked God the Father for a reprieve, but He said “your will be done.” He was obedient to His Father’s will. God gives us the strength to get through our suffering. It’s ok to question, just keep the faith.


After Mass, a quick stop for coffee at McDonald’s to hear about Jerry’s awesome trip, and an even quicker stop at the store for one loaf of bread, I scurried home. I walked the dog, talked to my friend Debbie in Chicago on the phone, then headed off to meet Helene at Arts In Bloom on the Square. The three day festival was great Friday and a huge rainy disaster Saturday, but today it was perfect.

Talented artists and friends we visited today. Some wonderful creative artwork.

My talented friend, Gary Williamson, is a fantastic paper sculpture artist.

Then, Helene and I stopped at The Cove, where the amazing potters had been building, throwing, and firing and demonstrating all weekend.

I visited with Flat Minda and Flat Alex, too.

Watch this cool, actually, smoking hot video of emptying the kiln.


Then, to finish off a great day, Helene and I stopped at Taqueria Hernandez for my favorite… gorditas.

Happy Sunday, my friends.