Art Glass

The City of Gracious Locals

Paul and I just returned from Victoria, British Columbia.  After staying for a month last summer we both were eager to return.  On a whim I contacted the owner of the vacation rental we used last year.  It was serendipitous that there was a vacancy for two weeks at the end of September. So I made some quick plans to escape the heat of the desert and we were off.

Entrance to our cozy bungalow in Oak Bay.
Lovely garden and arbor in our bungalow backyard.

We stayed within walking distance of the village of Oak Bay.  We were eager to explore the village once again and meet the locals.  And meet the locals we did!  

Lovely Flower Shop in Oak Bay Village
Nice sidewalk display of produce at Fairway Market in Oak Bay Village

Here are just a few of our experiences.  First we reconnected with Val H. whom we met last summer at The Oaks Restaurant, a popular local eatery.  We had a wonderful conversation about life and travels as if we were long lost friends.  Next we met Yvonne E. at the bus stop on her way to play bridge with girlfriends downtown. In a very short time we learned she had been a travel consultant and was full of many stories. We have a standing invitation to join her for tea  at her home during our next visit.  At our favorite pastry shop, “Pure Vanilla”, we met a delightful couple, Ginny and Wilf L.  Wilf had a 35 year career in the Royal Navy. We visited their “English cottage”, as Ginny calls it, for tea, cookies and a view of their beautiful garden with 6 foot dahlias and so much more. 

Abundant bakeries and cafes. This is Paul’s favorite.

Another happenstance experience was that we stayed next store to a couple from Vail, AZ, Elayne and Carlos R., whom we met there last summer. Victoria is their choice for a summer getaway!  We did not have a car and they graciously showed us some sites outside of our neighborhood.

Each day we walked different paths to the village to view the beautiful architecture and lovely residential gardens.  While walking different streets to get to the village I uncovered lots of charming small gardens.  Flowers of Oak Bay!

Creative rock display!

Not only is Victoria known for their hospitality but also its gardens!  Butchart Garden is world renown for its expansive display of flowers in five main gardens.  It is a must to see!

One of five gardens in Butchart Gardens

The harbors and waterways are everywhere. Here are a few!

Harbor at Sidney Bay
Inner Harbor of Victoria
Coastal areas are full of driftwood, Gonzales Beach

Now it’s time to get back to the glass studio!

Love to all!


Art Glass

Monsoon Madness 2023

As the whole country has dealt with crazy, extreme weather conditions we have experienced Monsoon Madness here in Arizona. We are truly grateful our storm loss was minimal compared to those who lost their homes, loved ones and so much more.

We do a “rain dance” for the wonderful monsoon rain! But with the rain come extremely strong winds. These storms come on fast but move through fast.

As you would imagine, trees in the desert environment are precious commodities. With the recent storms we lost our beloved 40′ Palo Verde tree that our arborist called the “most beautiful” tree in the neighborhood. I had a love/hate relationship with this tree. I loved it for its majestic foliage, bright yellow blossoms that nurtured the bees and its wonderful shade that sheltered my pots on the front patio. On the “hate” side we constantly had to be cleaning up something the tree produced all year: millions of yellow flowers petals, thousand of pods, broken limbs and very small leaves. With this year’s storms it dropped three different limbs and finally stood with one “weakling” branch. We had no choice but to remove what was left.

Palo Verde falling apart in the monsoons.
Palo Verde in Spring

We suffered another storm loss when one of a set of three tall red pots blew over and broke. These pots had traveled from NC to AZ. It is now in the pot “rehab” clinic being glued back together. There is more to come about of the process. Wish me luck on this endeavor.

But the rains bring other wonderful things to the desert. The desert plants that can survive with very little moisture perk up and enjoy all the rain. Some plants only bloom with the rains like the Rain Lily, Zephyranthes Candida.

Also, I love how some cactus take advantage of the rains and show their stuff like this Trumpet Flower Cactus Tricholobivia hyb.

Tricholobivia hyb.

To keep with the horticultural theme my latest glass work is a combination of acrylic painting with an embellished glass overlay. This my favorite so far. Let me know if you need more info on this or other glass work shown on our website.

Go with the Flow

Enjoy Fall and hopefully cooler temperatures!

Best to all:


Art Glass

How to be Entertained by a Grandson

Recently we had our 5 year-old grandson, Jackson, visit (without his parents) in our AZ home.  With daily temperatures hovering at 100+, how does a grandson take care of and entertain his grandparents?

Here is what he did:

Day 1:  He convinced Giamia that we need to bake brownies right after breakfast so we have all day to do multiple taste tests. Then it was time to play “sprinkle monster” in the backyard with the hose so G-dad stays cool all day!

Day 2:  Start the day right by helping to make a whole batch of chocolate chip waffles so Giamia won’t need to cook breakfast the rest of the week. Make it easy for the G-parents by making sure we are well stocked with frozen spicy, chicken nuggets with at least four different condiments for every meal except for chocolate-chip-waffle breakfasts.

Day 3:  Verbally brainstorming with G-dad for multiple hours about the unlimited ways he and G-Dad can rebuild the model train…so that it can run indoors and outdoors, etc., etc., etc. 

Day 4:  Keep track of the time for Giamia so that we can get to our community pool for the “kiddie” hours. On the way he reviewed the pool rules with #1 being “No peeing in the pool”. 

Off to the library to make sure Giamia doesn’t run out of stories to read to him.

Day 5:  Spa day for grandson and Giamia.  Jackson finally was still for more than 5 minutes and totally relaxed with the stylist, Jeannette, pampering him.  He must have known that Giamia treated him to a spa treatment so she could relax

Day 6:  He made sure all plans were in place for a play date with his local buddy, JJ, so he could give Giamia and G-dad a “break”. The schedule: 10 am cushion/blanket fort building, 11 am pool play, 12:30 happy meals at McD and quiet time after lunch in the fort, haha. I’m not sure who was more exhausted, the boys or the g-parents.

Day 7:  He returned home to his parents exhausted from having to entertain the G-parents for a whole week!! 

What a wonderful week being entertained by our grandson!


Art Glass

Abu Dhabi, Africa and Beyond 2023

It’s been a while since I’ve shared.  Many of you may have seen the FB pictures of our fabulous adventure to Abu Dhabi and South Africa. Two regions of the world, so different but equally as magically. This was an amazing adventure. Here are a few photos albums of our journey:

Abu Dhabi UAE

NYU-where Aaron is the head of the Interactive Media Department

Pondoro Lodge and Safari, South Africa

Lion standing guard in Kruger National Park

Cape Town, South Africa

Cape of Good Hope, Cape Town

After a very, very long airplane journey (about 32 hours) back home I fractured my foot shortly after arrival in Tucson.  There’s never a good time to incur an injury but as the saying goes “timing is everything”.  Thank goodness I did not have to maneuver through huge international airports with a bum foot. It’s been four weeks and the foot seems to be recovering nicely.  I am trying to pace myself and not to do too much too soon.  Wish me luck on that…I need all the encouragement to not move too quickly into my favorite activities, aerobics, walking, etc, etc.

With all that said, for my own sanity, I had to do something to keep busy.  Although I longed to resume work in my glass studio I could not manage moving large pieces of glass etc. during the no “weight bearing” stage.  I dug out some very old craft paints and well-loved paintbrushes and started to create.  After numerous YouTube segments and some short purchased videos I plunged right in.  It had been a very long time since I have picked a paintbrush.

As you know I love color, abstract art and floral design. Many “beginner” painting videos discussed flowers and color.  That seemed to appeal.  I struggled with strictly abstract art and couldn’t find a focus. Consequently, I’m still seeking my painting “style”. 

Here are a few of this beginner’s efforts.  All comments and responses, “the good, the bad and the ugly”  will be greatly appreciated. Your feedback about what appeals to your eye and why will help.

Art Dabblings

My next thoughts were how to combine painted pieces and glass art.  That really got me energized and I completed two acrylic/glass art pieces.  It took some figuring out how to create, display, mount and frame these pieces.  I like the outcome of this first rendition.  What do you think? 

Acrylic painting with embellished glass overlay!

I’ve rambled on long enough.  Please, please comment!

Most of my FB/Instagram posts are now going through my business platform so I can schedule the posts and try to post a little more often.  If you have not followed me there please do so in these links:

I am looking forward to hearing from you!  Please stay in touch!

Thanks, friends!

Art Glass

To All Special Moms!

Mother’s Day has always been a special day for me. Remembering way back we always tried to make our Mom feel special. Sometimes it was as simple as picking a dandelion bouquet! Later it became a day we would simply cherish a special time together with no need for presents.

I was so fortunate to have two very strong mothers that shaped my life.

My grandmother, Nanny, who lived to be 91, was one of my shining stars. She was widowed early and proved a single woman in the 1950’s could manage her husband’s many commercial endeavors for many years to come. She was a very important influencer of my life. Memories of her strenght laid the foundation for my entrepreneurial spirit.

In the days of the Beatles Invasion my grandmother played her own tunes!

My mother, Frances, lived to be 93. She too was widowed early and carried on the strong will power of her mother. In my teen years we seemed to “butt heads” because I too was strong willed. As I grew older I realized that she was my very best supporter and best friend. What took me so long??? Many of you may remember her from our many special events at Mary Sherwood Lake Living. It was so wonderful to have her there championing my cause! Miss you every day, Mom!

My mom at age 90!
Never too old to try something new!!!

This week just in time to celebrate Mother’s Day I was gifted with twelve baby Gambrel quails hatching on my front patio and entering into their life’s adventure. I was mesmerized by their antics and took way too many pictures.

Gambrel quails
Moma and babies shortly after birth. Don’t miss the little one nestled in its moma’s wing. Not quite sure he is ready for to face the day!

Do you want to see more of these cute baby quails? Click: The Quails Have Arrived

Now a flashback to 2011 to one of our special Mother’s Day events at my former Lake Gaston store. This annual event was always my favorite. To see so many families joining together to honor Mom made my heart sing! Here is a cute picture of a son and dad shopping for Mom’s gift and enjoying our potato bar.

Mother's day
Dad and son shopping for a special gift at
Mary Sherwood Lake Living’s Mother’s Day Brunch!

Wishing all a wonderful day whether you are a mom, grandmother, pet mom or special person in some Mom’s life now or in the past!

Love to all!


Art Glass

So much to tell you!

I have not been very good at keeping in touch. Here are some highlights since the last blog in November 2021.

Backing up to the end of last year…we spent Christmas together as a family for the first time in 2 years! Incredibly special!! We gathered at Aaron and Kiori’s house in Cummington, MA. Christmas PJs, Christmas cookies and Christmas snow play are just a few of the many memories made.

January passed in a blur as Paul continued to work as our community computer club president and me on my glass art projects.

I was invited to submit an article for Glass Patterns Quarterly magazine. I have never attempted to compose a magazine article that was a glass tutorial. It took many hours to design the glass pattern, write the instructions, and photograph each step. I now have a real appreciation for those who publish. Here is an exerpt of the article. It is copyrighted so I cannot share the whole article. For more information contact Glass Pattern Quarterly.

There were many adventures in February starting with a fabulous visit from my BFF, Lu Gross. We made glass together, cooked together and explored the sites. This is one of the many amazing glass and metal sculptures we saw at the Tucson Botanical Garden.

Next up was our first week-long grandparent duty in Santa Monica. Jackson (age 4) was such a delight…so many laughs, giggles and hugs! There were way too many happenings to describe all. We enjoyed every minute except the last night when we almost lost the beloved “lovey” before bedtime. All of us searched high and low just as there was a major Jackson melt-down brewing. Zoe, the lovey, was found! It could have been a long night. We survived the week! Whew!

March started off bright with a visit to the Chihuly in the Desert exhibit at the Desert Botanical Gardens in Phoenix. I can never get enough of seeing Chihuly glass! What a Master!

There are lots of new glass art pieces being delivered to Jane Hamilton Fine Art gallery this week. I will be featured as one of their newest artists in the 30 Year Anniversary Show, March 18, from 4 to 7 pm. Here is a sneak peek of a few new pieces.

Coming up is some exciting news about a large-scale art project being commissioned for our community Activity Center. It has been so much fun working on the committee planning this installation. The projected installation is November 2022. Look forward to more about this as the plans progress.

I think this is enough of my ramblings for now!

Be safe as we start to engage in more travels this summer. Pray for peace in Ukraine.

Best wishes to all!


Art Glass Birthdays Celebrations

Celebrations and Connections

So Much Going On…

Wow, what a busy time!  The Fall season has flown by.  After returning from our wonderful trip to Massachusetts (read more here) I jumped right back into the glass studio to try to be creative for several upcoming events.  With the jet lag of the East coast travel, it took me several days to get back in the grove.  Finally, the mind and body became engaged!  Thank goodness!!!

The Fall Sculpture Show at the Jane Hamilton Fine Art Gallery was great!  I made lots of new contacts with clients and artists.   Participating were several very well-known sculpture artists who create large works.  I felt like my smaller glass pieces were playing with the “big boys”!  Here are several photos of the sculptures, which wrapped around the building’s promenade.

Jane Hamilton Fine Art Gallery Promenade
Let the Sun Shine In by Mary Sherwood Art Glass
Parade by Paul Eisner
Commissioned Ceramic Garden Sculpture by
Russ Vogt

With the upcoming La Encantada Fine Art Festival quickly approaching the creative juices began to flow.  Between the Sculpture Event and the La Encantada show prep, I have created over 25 new pieces.  No wonder my fingers are still trying to recover from multiple knicks and small cuts!!!  Here is a sneak peek at what will be at the La Encantada Fine Art Festival.

Fly Away
Ball of Color
Craters of the Moon

By far the highlight of the past month has been celebrating Jackson’s fourth birthday!  Because of distance and COVID, we have missed his last two birthdays.  That made this one even more special!  Watching him have fun with new toys, chocolate cake and birthday parties made me reflect on how important and beautiful it is to celebrate LIFE!  Don’t postpone those celebrations, those personal connections and happy moments!  Here are a few of our happy moments!

Jackson’s Heavenly Constrution Chocolate Cake
Thomas the Train Construction 101!
Construction Party Family

Come visit us at the La Encantada Fine Art Festival On November 20-21.  Look for us in front of the Apple Store.  Also, to see more of our work, visit the Jane Hamilton Fine Art Gallery just across the street in the Plaza Colonial with the dome!  

Be safe as we gather for the upcoming holidays!  

All the best,


Art Glass

Fall in Love with Fall!

I didn’t realize how much I missed the changing colors of fall until this past week! Paul and I took an unexpected trip to the Berkshires in Massechutes to do work in our son’s home. WOW! The leaves were at their peak, the air was crisp and the river was rushing! Perfect timing! How lucky we were to be surrounded by such beauty! Here are a few of my favorite pictures at his house which overlooks the Westfield River.

Our log cabin bungalow nestled in the trees! By the way, it is available as a vacation rental!!!
Our view of the rushing Westfield River.

Our trip was not all work. We took a few days to visit nearby communities. My favorite was the Bridge of Flowers in Shelburne Falls. In 1929, on a rescued old trolley bridge, the Women’s Club began transforming the bridge into this beautiful garden. It is in bloom from April to October’s first frost. Right now the dahlias are magnificent! I look forward to future visits in other seasons! For more information go to The Bridge of Flowers link.

400 feet of non-stop blooms!!!
I was happy to see so many varieties of dahlias
and so were the bees!!!

Since arriving home I have jumped right back into the glass studio! This Saturday I will be participating in a sculpture event at Jane Hamilton Fine Art Gallery.

I have about ten new pieces in the works but most are still in the process of being fired or waiting for stands! I’m right down to the deadline because of our unplanned get-a-way! It is exciting to have a few new additions (before firing) inspired by our New England visit.

Falling Leaves!
Fall Agave Basket
A very abstract composition of the rushing Westfield River!
Apple Picking Time!

Look for us at the Fall La Encantada Fine Arts Festival on November 20 & 21.

I would love to hear about your favorite Fall things!

Thanks for following us and your continuous support!



Mary Sherwood Art Glass

Art Glass

A New Chapter

When I sold my business and moved to Arizona in 2015 many of my friends and customers said I would not be able to be without some sort of business endeavor. Many times I heard, “You will open another store”. Little did I know that my love for glass decorative accessories would lead to a creative and challenging new career as a glass artist. After five years of continuous learning, experimenting, and creating art glass I am entering the next phase of this glass journey.

I feel quite honored to be invited to join Jane Hamilton Fine Art Gallery. This well-renowned gallery of talented and nationally known artists will now be the exclusive Tucson gallery exhibiting my work. Here is one of my largest garden sculptures to date that is now available at the gallery.

Let the Sun Shine

Even though we now will be focusing on larger glass art we will still work with you through our website and upcoming shows on items that are not represented at this gallery.

On a personal note, we just returned from our first visit to Jake, Elif and Jackson’s house in Santa Monica since their return from the East coast. We are so pleased to have them closer. There are so many incredible pictures of our weekend. Here are a few of my favorites:

Jackson assures G-Dad that he knows
How to Babysit a Grandpa
Striking the pose as a cool CA kid!

Wishing you all the best as we move into a beautiful, colorful Fall.

Be safe and stay healthy!



Endless Summer Sale