New Roads, New Experiences


My goal for this website is to have a place to organize my thoughts, communicate my hopes and share what I love to do.

 This is a multipurpose site about how I as a 75-year-old single woman finds my world today, a general commentary on life, and my art notes.

I am the 2nd of 8 siblings born in Duluth Minnesota, I was an LPN for about 20 years in Panama where I went as a Peace Corps volunteer at 21 years of age and married a Panamanian with whom I had 3 children.

There were some interesting times living in Panama of which I will probably tell,  check out my Panama stories.

I returned to the USA and finished up my status as RN working in Texas and Florida. I studied Chinese medicine in Texas and have  Masters degree  though  I mostly needle myself these days.

I am a retired single lady, ready for  new challenges as I  travel here and there in my 22 ft RV.

And that is who I am today.

I’m mostly happy with who I am today.

I tell you all this to find common ground.



I will be an Artist!


I was pretty happy being a nurse for many years but when I retired I had no plan for what comes next, then I read that anyone can be an artist so I thought I’m anyone, I  will be an artist.

I am a woman wondering what comes next, open to new ideas, willing to exchange thoughts but confused and restless about who I am now in these later decades of my life.

Being a twice-retired person of meager resources and advanced age, I started out cheap, buying craft paints and board panels and skinny canvas. I painted flowers the ‘one stroke’ Donna Dewberry way. (she is the one who said anyone can paint) I had fun painting pretty flowers for children and sold them at school and community sales.

But lately, I have been watching u-tube videos of abstract painting and this is my new favorite way to paint.  I am a self-taught (artist) painter with help from U-Tube videos, Mr. Lang and Ms. Dewberry and  Mr.Tim Gagnon plus a heap of art how-to books  There is so much to learn!



Hello UpDates

I’m writing a new ‘Hello’ post today because I have neglected my blog for awhile and life is moving along even faster than ever these days.

I’ve written here and there about my plan to live in a rv and it has almost finally happened.

I have a 1991  22 ft Tioga Montera RV that I have rejuvenated for the last 4-5 months and finally we are ready to hit the road destinations unknown.

It has taken this long for me to feel comfortable with my old RV and she needs a name to go along with all her new dudes.  I’m still working on the interior but it has been so hot I can’t get her looking spiffy without getting heat stroke unless I’m hooked up to electricity and for that I need to go to a campground.  Still learning about. propane  where to get it and all about the gray and the black tanks, not a problem once learned and everything works as it should.  We are almost there.

In trying to expect any problems on the road I’ve been busy getting the insurance and roadside assist and I have 6 different apps on my phone to help me find my way.  I thought to go ahead and get any dental work done before I left and that turned out to be an upper denture. OMG that hurts like hell and it’s taking me longer than I expected to heal and tolerate the thing in my mouth.  It may not have been my best choice but now there is no going back.  Finally seeing a light at the end of the trial because it doesn’t hurt as much today as it did yesterday.

I have added a backup camera, a solar panel (I’d like a couple more) a video cam, an extra AC, all sorts of water hoses and other hoses and tools and am hopeful that I am well ready for everything but a blowout.  Tires are ok for now.

Thoughts for a name?

Questioning my Good Sense

Why the hell did I do that?

I don’t understand how I could have thought it was a good idea to bid on a 31-foot class A RV. IMG_4639.jpg

Why was my thinking so far off?  I liked the huge front windshield looking over everyone with a clear view ahead, and it looks really nice inside, roomy..32 feet. But it left out any information of the inner workings, the motor, the tires, generator, battery.  so much left out should have been a cautionary note that I missed.

I’ve been looking for a rig of about 20 feet or less so I can feel confident in my ability to drive it.

I know this.

Yet I bid $9,200  or so and no one outbid me. I’m trying to understand what prompted me to make a bid when the item was impossible for me to drive and I am not ready to start living in an RV.  My sister says it reminds her of when I called her to tell her I’d shaved my head.  I had to live with that for a long time., and it still gets referenced.  They think I’m goofy but I was taking Ambien at the time and one does strange things in their sleep while under its influence.

Could this new life adventure, living full time in a van be another goofiness?  I’m not taking medication that would account for any goofiness.

But as I think about this I remember another time when my behavior could have been the  result of  medication…which I still take. The literature noted that one could have unusual behavior and could take risks  or start gambling I was very sensual and even  inappropriate, but to be very honest I had a great time, to the embarrassment of some.    Nothing wrong with a 65 year old woman feeling sensual lI’ll remember those days with fondness and without embarrassment.) and a little sad that time has past.


Unsold Paintings & More


I have about 30 unsold paintings, 50 pursettas, and many wood bangles.    Note cards too.

Seems like all this is telling me something.  ReEvaluate my time (I have plenty) my finances ( I don’t have a lot).  Perhaps its time to face the music, as they say, and do something with all this before I’m ready to move on, move  to my next adventure. I have too much stuff , won’t fit into my new life, my new domain which will only measure 8 x 22 feet with wheels.

I thought I could continue painting while on the road and sell them at different towns we stop in but what kind of license will that require?

Whatever style mobile living we choose there won’t be a lot of wall space to hang my favorites on.  so what will I do with them.  I don’t know.  They are special to me but may not be for anyone else

I’m almost in tears

It’s an emotional time, excuse me.

I don’t actually have that domain yet so the description could be in error, but it’s c.lose, I’ve been spending time on ebay again. And counting my paints.

Good news, my family will be happy to know that my sister-in-law may be part of my plans .

Joan will be the muscle, I will be the…….oh that’s a little scary considering the status of my brain, I will be the one with the aging brain.  I hope she is up to it (hope I am) but if she can hike many miles with a pack on her back, I will be happy to share the space..    She is a fantastic person ever if she talks so much,  To my chagrin when talking about how this might work I told her she talks too much ,………silence on the line…….quickly I said no, you don’t talk too much you just talk more than I do. (she does talk a lot though I often learn something from her,)  sorry Joan.  My sister is relieved that she is coming with me i guess she thinks I’m not strong enough to manage on my own tho that was my plan until I remembered that Joan and I are in similar situations and this may prove to be the best option both  of us have..  I think when I’m with Joan I will by her example, get stronger.  I’m lazy now. We will be two nurses on the road.

I’m a lazy 75 year old.  With luck I’ll be a prosperous 80 year old  or at least a happy 80 year old.  That thought really puts things in perspective. I’m only 5 years away to 80 damn that’s old !

So, the art.  I guess we should do one more farmers market, moving sale, a great reduction in price, the problem with that is that it takes a lot of energy to set up the tent,  the grid for the paintings, the tables carting it all around. and my sister is not feeling very enthusiastic and neither am I now and I need her help to put it all together.  I can’t do it alone. Maybe I can sell all that equipment. (sold)

I was very lucky that a woman loved my work and bought 6 paintings,  I haven’t found another buyer.  But I haven’t show my work during the cold months, they won’t get sold sitting here in my studio. I guess the fact is that I don’t need the sales enough.  Of course I do need them but not enough to try different options and persist.

Anyway, I will continue painting of course but not to expect sales  just for my pleasure and family can just expect to get paintings for presents from now on.

Okay, nuff said, I’ll  go organize my paint brushes now


How did I let this happen?


Is it too late to be making a plan?

Finally starting to think about my later years

I know what I’ll do during my 75th,

I’ll be making plans

Who will I be in this next phase,

Will I  bring anything of value to another person,

What are my options.

And why did I let this happen to me?  Never thought I’d be single at this age but divorces are a step into the unknown.  I haven’t made any effort to find a new love or husband,  I’m a happy single, That is not my goal, I’ve been a resource for my kids when they needed me.  They need to be my resource now.

I don’t think I’m alone when I say, I never wanted a long life. And suddenly now I’m 75 Amazes me how did that happen!!   And if I do live long I hope to be functioning at a high level and then drop dead…the wish of all us oldsters.  No pain no drama just be here one day and gone the next.

What will you be remembered for?



Notes on Mourning,

Different cultures mourn in different ways.  In Panama, I noted that there are certain guidelines (mostly from the ‘church) on the wearing of black, then purple and finally white clothes over a specific time frame to indicate the stage of mourning.  If you wear black it is assumed you are in mourning even if you just like your little black dress. I wore a black dress because I liked it and was asked several times ‘who died’

I may be back in another lifetime to work out whatever problems I’ve caused in this lifetime.  I need to doIMG_4639.jpg better to improve my karma

I keep my Buddha close to remind me to be kind in any situation. The only words of wisdom I’ve learned these many years, (and not always been true to myself,)  are just three words.

Just Be Kind. 

Feeling Stuck, Guess I’ll organize my Paint

I know what I need to do  but I’m having trouble getting things done, or doing things that have no relationship to what needs doing.

I have four 20 x 20 inch good canvases that I should paint something fantastic on but I’m afraid I’ll make a mess so I haven’t even tried to paint anything on them, instead I spend time organizing my paints.  My studio is a mess so I’m sure that will be my next project  wasting  time  before getting started painting.

I  need to watch some videos to get ideas to find my way back into a painting.  The whole moving plan has my mind distracted from the steps I need  to have a successful  move, a successful future on the road.

I’m assuming you know about my plan to buy an rv and live in it blissfully making my way around the country side selling my art…tailgateart, here and there now and then and forever thankful for the idea that could work for me and my old age life.

I”ll start making lists, it’s so nice to be able to scratch them off as they are completed. I feel very excited about my new life plan and wish I had everything ready now but it looks like I won’t be able to go forward until May.  Meanwhile I need to sell some paintings . And make prints to sell. And take my stuff to the market to sell.  And add photos of my work to our neighborhood news.

One unsettling problem I’ve had is that my computer died and took along with it my photos    Some but not all I’ve found in the cloud and can use them for prints, but the separate  albums I”d make of family and friends is gone.    I have an external hard drive but honestly I don’t know how to use it, everyone says just plug it in, but how to I know what is happening.  I bought a refurbished MacBook  so I’ll try to see what is on the hard drive using this newish computer.

Late note

Another failure computer wise, can’t find my pictures on the external disc, says I have no permission to see what’s there.  I tried to correct permissions but couldn’t.   Guess I’ll go organize my paint .IMG_3507.jpgIMG_3512.jpg

Searching on Ebay for my Home?

Every day I spend hours on my computer searching on Ebay for my new home.

Since when does Ebay sell homes?

It depends on how you define home.  For me,   being ‘homeless’ in one sense, just means starting a new life style that I am excited about and plan  to start in the next few months.

Doing my research, learning what this will entail, what I will need to be safe and how I will finance my new home.  My budget is not large nor is my income so I need to look carefully and not get overly enthusiastic at what I see today and  buy something I will not have a place  to park until I’m ready to roam.  (Which reminds me I need to update my passport as I want to spend time in Mexico).  I’m spending time on-u- tube reading the many blogs out there written by people who are  full time rv’ers.

One excellent resource is “Bob” of  He is the main guru of rv living and shares his years of experience living full time on public lands for free, he gives good information and is  well regarded in the community.  And there is community in this population, and it is growing.

I notice that there is a rather large number of older single woman who have taken this life style  .  Whether with limited resources or plenty,they report that they are happy  and only regret  not taking the leap to do this years  ago. Some even older than I am. (gasp)

You might think that these are just homeless people living in their car, or van and some are for sure.  But those   I’ve watched on their tube channels are not feeling homeless,   Many have    monetized  their utube channel and make videos of their travels and share their experiences good and not so good.  And it’s not just people over 65 retired, plenty of young people manage to work remotely from their rv and travel while working.

It’s not for everyone.

But I believe that I have the personality to live this way.  I’m an independent introvert, some might even say recluse, I  live in my head too much and this could be even therapeutic , not that I need  therapy!

I need to learn about generators, solar panels, holding tanks of water, gray and black tanks and how to manage heating and cooling and most importantly, how to drive one.

The only thing I regret is my age and there is nothing I can do about that and I’ll just get older.  Starting at 75 is not ideal, but I am ready now and excited to get started.IMG_1622

What is the Big Deal about Giclée Prints?


What are giclée prints?

(pronounced zhee-clay)

This is a type of inkjet printing meant to produce a product at a higher quality with a longer lifespan than a standard desktop inkjet printer.

Three basic criteria

  • The print needs to be 300 dots per inch to insure the sharpest detail
  •  The paper used must be of archival quality and acid free.   Professional series papers are more expensive than plain white copy paper. Epson papers are among the finest papers to use.  If you are buying a giclee print confirm the type of paper it is printed on.
  • A giclee print  is printed on a large format printer using pigment based inks.  Pigment based inks have a longer lifespan, can last from 100 to 200 years without significant fading

The advantage to artists producing their work as a giclee print is that is can be created ‘on demand’.  Only printing one print at a time.

They are more expensive to produce, and more expensive to buy.

  •  Ink is more expensive, a new set of inks cost $140.00 for my Epson Artisan 1430.
  •  The printer is more expensive, $350 instead of $89. (still a good deal but I use it only for prints and use my hp for other needs)
  • The paper is much more expensive.

I have the Epson Artisan 1430 and can print up to 13′ x 19′ prints and I use Epson inks and Epson art papers

This Information is taken from an article at Creative Blog Art and Design inspiration.



On the Road Again………


Doesn’t this picture make you smile?

It does me every time I see it!  That’s my sister Shar and I with the breeze in our hair having fun on our get out of town vacation.  We grabbed some time and in her new car drove to Santa Fe NM because we could. We made some stops along the way and wish we’d planned our days to spend more time in Santa Fe and Taos and less in Madrid but it was an adventure not soon forgotten….well forgotten, not sure I can say that as I am forgetting details already, but the feeling of sisterhood will never be forgotten, always fondly remembered.

You know that I lived outside of the USA for 30 years and so never had the sense of sisterhood with my two wonderful sisters and it is just now, as an old lady that I appreciate being a sister to them and them to me. (okay I have been in the US now for another nearly 30 years and that makes me…really old)

We stayed in Madrid in IMG_7355a  cute IMG_4216 little prefab house for 3 nights expecting to see more activity in the town than we did ( I bought a pretty silver ring to replace my lost favorite silver ring ) what we will surely remember there was the really awful tasting water, really stinky water, we were warned and it really will be an unforgettable  part of our trip cuz we didn’t really want to even bathe in it. One large room, a bed and a really uncomfortable couch we took turns sleeping on we were able to walk to downtown to see the shops. The IMG_7394Street was crowded with people here for the balloon fest in Albuquerque.  We didn’t know about the balloon fair when we planned our trip but we were in the right place at the right time and got up at 4am to get to the events.  It was worth it. Next stop Santa Fe.IMG_7413

My Restless Mind What’s next?


First I painted flowers following lessons online and in books using techniques by one-step maven Dona Dewberry it was fun, they certainly weren’t botanical specimens but after gifting many I began selling them, people liked them at craft fairs. Then I started making cards with my photos and selling them too.


Next up, I saw the papers that my sister used to make her rocks and thought about what else could be made with the same papers.   I thought jewelry and ordered wood bangles from China when I couldn’t ‘find any suppliers in the USA, I did try..  I covered them with beautiful papers made in Japan, Thailand, India, and Tibet. and gave them three coats of varnish.  I ordered some rings from China too so they would match the bangles.  Beautiful items but our wrists and fingers are larger than those of Chinese women and we had trouble getting them over our hands without scraping our knuckles and the rings only fit to the first knuckle, (so I called them knuckle knockers).  I still have most of them, will give them away one of these days. Slight miscalculation but many pleasant hours of making.

Never one to be without a project   I started sewing little purses, I called them pursettas and I must have sewn 100 pursettas , thinking surely women would see how convenient they were, it was when we wore our mini purses hanging from our shoulders and kept our phones and keys ready for a trip to the store,  I made vertical and horizontal pursettas with pretty buttons to use for the office. Some for summer, others for winter and some large enough to carry a tennis ball.

PicMonkey Collage (12)I must have 85 of them still.  Need a pursetta?

I am an idea person but unfortunately, I have difficulty following through with marketing because if you can’t sell you should go slowly into the project and maybe start with making only a few items to test and not go crazy with this new idea. Good advice

I need to follow my advice.

For me it’s not even about making money as I often give my stuff away, you like it?  it’s yours.

I do that.

Next up I made rocks like my sister Shar but only used papers from Thailand because I loved the elegance and deep colors of the papers. Shar made these beauties and I made the next,  by the way, they are still for sale, drop me a note if you are interested, she sells them by weight and design.


IMG_0476 (1)

Ready for more?

I ordered online classes from  Tim Gagnon to learn to paint landscapes.  I’m still working on my trees, having trouble painting realistic blooming, foliage on my trees.


next was a flurry of abstract paintings on canvas paper, practicing ribbon art and most lately my dots and lines that I really enjoyed making but don’t expect them to be a hot item, that’s okay I still like them any way they make a nice statement framed in a white frame.IMG_4174I took this photo thru the glass frame and I like how it turned out with a change of color and I bet I could change it more. I think I’ll try it with a few more of those paintings cuz I think it would make a cool image  on a print.( when it warms up, too cold to get out in the sun just yet)

It’s good for me to have a project that makes me get up in the morning, eager to get started.  I think besides getting prints, finding the right papers for prints, my next project will be learning all I can about living RV full-time, as time is getting short!