Search This Blog


Thursday, August 25, 2016

Art in Atenas - My Contributions

Here are the paintings I will have on display at the "Art in Atenas" Gordon Balter Memorial Art Show.

Where: Hotel Colinas del Sol, Calle Boqueron, Atenas, Costa Rica (600m east of the high school gym, 100m east of the Roca Verde gate).

The show runs from Saturday, August 27 (2-7pm) and Sunday, August 28 (2-5pm), 2016. Hope to see you there!

"Moona Lisa" - 31.5"x31.5", acrylic on gallery wrapped canvas.
Photo reference courtesy Pam Utton.

"Painted Lady" - 35.5"x35.5", acrylic on gallery wrapped canvas.
Photo reference courtesy Linda Gorchinsky.

"Pork and Coffee Beans" - 31.5"x31.5", acrylic on gallery wrapped canvas.
Photo reference courtesy Patricia Anne Jones.

"The Goat" - 31.5"x31.5", acrylic on gallery wrapped canvas.
Photo reference artist's own.

"Tranquillo" - 35.5"x35.5", acrylic on gallery wrapped canvas.
Photo reference courtesy Gloria Navarro-McDermott.

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Art in Atenas

A reminder - if you are in the Atenas, Costa Rica, area on Saturday, August 27 (2-7pm) and Sunday, August 28 (2-5pm) please stop in at Hotel Colinas del Sol to see what seven talented Atenas artists will have on display.

This will be our second show and is being held in honor of Gordon Balter, our friend and the visionary who recognized there was a lot of talent in the Atenas area. He was the one who gathered us together and organized our first show.

Here is your invitation:

Thursday, August 11, 2016

The Ironworkers

Because our house was broken into through one of the California windows - also called jalousies - our landlady has decided to have all the windows with glass louvers covered with iron bars from the inside. This is a smart move - it will increase the value of her house and the only way someone can now break in is by smashing one of the glass windows - and that we will surely hear.

This doesn't mean Costa Rica is a dangerous place to live in - our little community has been very safe over the years and we do not fear living here. 

Two ironworkers arrived the other day to take measurements. In Canada, they would have arrived in a van, and wearing cloth booties over their shoes so as not to dirty up floors or carpets.

Not here in Costa Rica! Our iron worker guys showed up at our gate riding big motorcycles and wearing wife beater shirts. They saw my art work lying all over the place and were suitably impressed. 

Then they went all around out house measuring the windows. They are supposed to be back here on Saturday to install the bars. 

I would take pictures of the process, except the bandits stole my camera!

Monday, August 8, 2016

Atenas Painters Association Second Art Show

Put these dates on your calendar - Saturday, August 27, 2016, from 2pm to 7pm, and Sunday, August 28, 2016, from 2pm to 5pm - the Gordon Balter Memorial Art Show, at Hotel Colinas del Sol, Atenas, Costa Rica.

Gordon Balter was the visionary who recognized that the small town of Atenas, Costa Rica, had a lot of creative artists who should be brought together and encouraged to put on an art show. This we did in 2014 to great success thanks to him.

Gordon was also our good friend and neighbor.  So, in Gordon's memory, we artists have gathered together again for our second show.

This year, the featured artists are Al Alexander, myself, Harriet Sheppard, Jocelyn Farguhar, Sheila Nelson, Julianne Jones and Jan Yatsko. Our work is varied with no two artists doing the same kind of art.

We hope to see many of you at our show.

Saturday, July 30, 2016


Friday, July 29, 2016


Before I continue with this post, I want to stress that robberies happen everywhere around the world - in big cities and in small, in occupied and unoccupied homes, and elsewhere.

We are hardly going to leave our adopted town and country to move elsewhere because of this one robbery.

About two weeks ago, a spate of home robberies started in our neighborhood of Vista Atenas. We were the second house to be hit and we lost my cell phone, my camera and my iPad and Lance's computer.

It happened, we dealt with it and we move on. Thanks to our good friends and neighbors, we have the use of borrowed computers for the time being. I have replaced my cell phone and we'll be doing the same with our other electronics.

What I want to focus on here is our interaction with the Atenas police and the Costa Rican judicial system. The police arrived at our house within ten minutes of our call to them. We were told to file a report with the OIJ (Organismo de Investigacion Judicial) the very next day. A report (denuncia) needs to be filed with them before they can start an investigation, enter your property, take fingerprints, etc.

My interview with the OIJ was very positive. I had a translator with me (thank you so much, neighbor Margarita). I have a copy of our denuncia with all details, including serial numbers of computers, etc. The OIJ people are very professional and took us seriously.

The OIJ team were then able to arrive at our house that same day and dusted for fingerprints and took photos of the point of entry into our house. I had to have my fingerprints taken the next day to distinguish mine from the perp's.

Our community has banded together to deal with our present crime problem. We have met with the mayor of Atenas, the chief of police, the head of OIJ and have come up with workable community solutions.

Not to say the problem has been completely solved ... but at least we are working together and we are a tight knit community.

Sunday, June 26, 2016


As I was doing the prep work for our dinner tonight - I like preparing our food ahead of time as much as I can - it occurred to me that much of our dinner was due to our connections here in Costa Rica.

Tonight we are having lentils with sausage and kale. The jalapeƱo sausages are made by Marcial Artavia, Sperone Italian Sausage, here in Atenas. He sells them at our feria every Friday.

The kale was given to me by our friend and neighbor, Sharon (owner of the famed dog Diogi). Sharon also gave us a bag of lettuce and a yummy quiche which we had for dinner the other night. All bought at another feria (farmers' market).

The onions, garlic and carrot that go into this dish came from the markets in Atenas. So as I chop and cook, it is nice to know that so much of what we are eating here in Costa Rica is local.

Thursday, June 16, 2016


I've always been intrigued with orchid plants. I had a collection when we lived outside Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. When we decided to move to Costa Rica, I gave them all away.

Orchids in Costa Rica are very inexpensive to buy, compared to Canada. Plus, they are so easy to look after. They can stay outside all year around, they don't need greenhouses or special treatment.

I do have to watch out for fungus problems, but I have a spray for that.

Here are photos of one of my favorite orchid plants.



Two flower stems from one orchid, covered in these small flowers.
My "orchid tree". Convenient to have them in one place.

This isn't my entire collection. I have others on windowsills and hanging in other places.