Category Archives: Architecture

Creative Juice #83

Creative Juice #83

For your idea-sparking pleasure:

Creative Juice #82

Creative Juice #82

Good stuff to read this weekend. Inspire yourself!

Creative Juice #78

Creative Juice #78

Twelve articles for your artistic pleasure.

Creative Juice #76

Creative Juice #76

Articles to inspire you.

  1. My husband doesn’t have the board game gene. I have no one to play with. Sigh.
  2. Why we will miss Sue Grafton—what she did to the mystery genre.
  3. Mount Fugi seen from the air with clouds streaming by.
  4. Quilt guild show and tell.
  5. Do you want to keep your resolutions this year?
  6. 16 thoughts for creatives.
  7. 50 interesting books.
  8. It’s not too late to join this daily art challenge for 2018.
  9. Are you still making the same old fried eggs for breakfast?
  10. Beautiful photographs of animals, people, and exotic locations.
  11. I am so jealous of this artist’s journal. She’s so talented.
  12. I dislike big box churches. Why aren’t there more churches like this one in the United States? A church should be beautiful. Give me arches any day.

TPC: Circle



An architectural element on the Community Center at St. Sava’s Church in Phoenix, for the Tuesday Photo Challenge.

Creative Juice #63

Creative Juice #63

Sharing twelve artsy articles to juice up your creativity:

  1. Street art.
  2. A sculptor turns a fallen tree into a sculpture.
  3. Super Converse kicks!
  4. The truth about corsets.
  5. What happens when Helen Keller goes to a dance studio? No, I’m not making a tasteless joke. Martha Graham was a friend of Keller’s.
  6. This one might make you cry. It’s about the death of a mother. Skip it if you must.
  7. Amazing award-winning quilts.
  8. If you have the ability to snap a picture of your pet doing something silly, you may want to enter this contest next year. If not, you can still enjoy this year’s finalists.
  9. Pages from a Zentangle sketchbook.
  10. Shipping containers never looked so good.
  11. How a unicorn makes music. (Because I’m dedicated to bringing you all the unicorn stories I can.)
  12. Quirky ceramics and a podcast.



When I was nine years old, my parents, who were German immigrants and still had relatives there, took my baby brother and me to Germany on vacation. It was their first visit home in ten years.

Hellbrunn2 by Nicholas Even

Schloss Hellbrun, photo by Nicholas Even

One of the highlights of the trip for me was crossing the border into Salzburg, Austria. We toured the famous salt mine, and visited the fabled Hellbrun Palace, built in 1613–19 by Markus Sittikus von Hohenems, Prince and Archbishop of Salzburg.

by Zairon Salzburg_Schloss_Hellbrunn_Wasserspiele_21

photo by Zairon

Schloss Hellbrun is also famous for its Wasserspiele, literally “water games.” Hidden among the gardens are fountains, a series of practical jokes devised by Sittikus to be played on his guests. If I remember correctly, I was among a throng of tourists absorbed in the workings of a miniature mechanical village (pictured above)tucked inside a little grotto on the grounds when we were suddenly squirted with water. (My parents stepped back with baby Billy just moments before. Obviously, they knew what was coming.)

Below are more statuary and trick fountains in the gardens. (Click on the photos below to enlarge and reveal the photo credits.)



The crown below rises and falls with the pressure of the water, symbolizing the rise and fall of power:

Hellbrunn_wasserspiele_1 Matthias Kabel

Photo by Matthias Kabel.

Below is a video (narrated in German) which shows the Wasserspiele in action.

Creative Juice #56

Creative Juice #56

This very special edition of Creative Juice features posts from My OBT, one of my very favorite blogs. Every day, Donna shares something beautiful—or not so beautiful. I include at least one of her posts in CJ each week, but I have so many in reserve I thought I’d bless you with a whole bunch today. If you enjoy them, you might want to subscribe to My OBT so you never miss a single one.

Creative Juice #55

Creative Juice #55

Fill up on these amazing glimpses of genius.

  1. More modern quilts.
  2. Rope art.
  3. Almost as good as being in a watercolor workshop.
  4. Taking paper flowers to a highly-refined level.
  5. What do you believe in?
  6. Sweet little rats.
  7. When I was a student in Pittsburgh, I visited Heinz Chapel and loved the blue light streaming in through the stained glass windows. Here’s a mosque in Iran whose windows cast a kaleidoscopic effect.
  8. I’ve read nine of these one-sitting books. Only 91 more to go…
  9. Pigeons wouldn’t be nearly so annoying if you could get them to wear crocheted duds.
  10. Gorgeous astrophotography.
  11. A gallery that features art of 60+year-old artists.
  12. A husband and wife who create snow globes together.

Bonnie’s Trip to Russia

Bonnie’s Trip to Russia

When I was a little girl, my very best friend, Bonnie Ann, lived just across the street. That’s me on the the left with my “pixie” haircut that my mother adored. I coveted Bonnie’s hair, because she could wear pigtails.

Andrea and Bonnie

When I was seven, my brother was born, and I was sent to my aunt’s house for a week while my mother and baby Billy were in the hospital. When I came home, Bonnie’s family had moved. I was heartbroken. Bonnie told me months before she was moving, but I never believed she actually would.

She came back to visit a couple of times, but then I didn’t see her for decades.

Until recently. A couple of years ago, she tracked me down. We reconnected through a blog post I wrote for Doing Life Together. We friended each other on Facebook, and last spring she came to Phoenix to judge dog obedience trials, and we got to spend a couple of hours together.

Bonnie recently traveled to Russia for three weeks. She posted hundreds of photographs on Facebook, and gave me permission to share some of them with you. I picked out just a few, mostly highlighting Russian architecture and art.

Bonnie is in most of these pictures. It’s amazing, isn’t it, how much she looks like she did in the picture above, even though she’s only a year younger than me (er, twenty-nine…).

The Marine Canal looking toward the Grand Cascade & palace. — in Peterhof, Sankt-Peterburg, Russia.

Peterhof – Tzar Peter the Great’s summer palace known as the ‘Russian Versailles’

Old Stalingrad market.

A mosaic at the Old Stalingrad market

Railroad station ceiling mural depicting the 1918 Russian Civil War. — in Volgograd, Russia.

Mural on the ceiling of the railroad station in Volgograd, depicting the 1918 Russian Civil War.

Statues (click on the smaller images to enlarge and reveal captions):





All Saints Church

All Saints Church, Volgograd

Catherine the Great’s Summer Palace:



Church of the Blood. — in Saint Petersburg, Russia

The Church of the Blood, St. Petersburg

Palace Square - Hermitage, Saint Petersbury

Hermitage, Palace Square, St. Petersburg

Interior of St. Peter:Paul Church

Interior of St. Peter and Paul Church, St Petersburg

Our Lady of Vladimir Cathedral's bell tower — in Saint Petersburg, Russia.

Bell tower of Our Lady of Vladimir Cathedral, St. Petersburg

St. Basil's. Famous Kremlin clock tower on left.

The iconic St. Basil’s Cathedral, Moscow; Kremlin bell tower at left


Friendship of People Fountain in Moscow. The sixteen figures represents the 16 different cultures of the old Soviet Union. The statue over Bonnie’s right shoulder is special to Bonnie, because it represents the Ukraine, which is part of Bonnie’s heritage.

The Cathedrals of the Kremlin:


Changing of the Guard at Kremlin

Changing of the guard at the Kremlin



Red Square

Red Square; Kremlin on the left


Russia's largest shopping mall - GUM Department Store at the Red Square - built in the 1890's.

Russia’s largest shopping mall – GUM Department Store at the Red Square – built in the 1890’s.


Vodka museum

The Vodka Museum. Pretty door.

Pretty staircase within Izmaylovo Kremlin

Pretty staircase within Izmaylovo Kremlin

Stalin's grave

Stalin’s grave


Samovars for sale in a marketplace

Eggs 1

Decorative eggs

Matryoshka dolls

Nesting Matryoshka dolls

Putin's Palace, Moscow

Putin’s Palace, Moscow

View of Kremlin and St. Basil from cruise ship

View of the Kremlin and St. Basil from cruise ship on the Moskva River

The subway station in Moscow must be one of the cleanest and most beautiful in the world:

Subway art

Traditional Russian folk art – Gzhel – on subway wall

Mosaic of Ukranina Soviet workers in sub station

Mosaic of Ukranian Soviet workers

Sickle and hammer in sub station

Sickle and hammer from Soviet times

Moscow subway station

Yes, this is the subway.

A great big ARHtistic License thank you to Bonnie Lee for generously sharing her beautiful photographs.