This site was created to give me a space to talk about my most current art or craft creations and showcase my work and activities. It is also a place for me to express my love of art, photography, painting, crafts, gardening, floral arranging, decorating, design, and collecting.
What is the purpose of this site?
Who is Kyle?I was educated and raised in the southern part of the United States and moved to New Hampshire about twenty years ago. It was one of the best decisions I ever made. The moment I moved to New Hampshire I felt I had found a lost part of myself. I am proud to call it home. Though I love to travel to new places, having been to a third of the states in the union, to Canada, and to Mexico, I rarely choose to leave New England.
My husband and my chosen family are the most important thing in my life. We chose to be in each other's lives and to me that makes our connection truly special. They are my greatest source of enjoyment and inspiration. I consider our companion animals to be part of our family. They are such a joy; they make life very interesting. I can't imagine life without them. Right now, we have two canine companions, one feline companion, and many aquatic companions. Eventually, we may adopt more; you never know what twists life holds.
After many years of pursuing corporate careers, that lacked soul, I now focus my energies on doing the things I love. I concentrate my attention on painting, drawing, writing, blogging, gardening, and making Happiness Tree decor. I also enjoy reading, films, photography, crafts, floral arranging, decorating, and design. Our home was built in the 1870's and over the past decade my husband and I have been modernizing her, fixing her up, and generally making her beautiful. I am an avid walker/hiker and I've practiced yoga for about twenty years now. I am an active environmentalist, a secular humanist, an animal activist, and a vegetarian.
What is the history of the Happiness Tree?Some of the inspiration for Happiness Trees came from where my grandmother lived. She lived In Williamsburg Virginia, which if you don't remember from history class, was one of the capitals of the colonies before our nation existed. During the colonial period leaves, dried pods, stems, flowers, and sometimes fruit were used as a decorative accessory during festivities. Even now, great effort is still expended to use those traditional decorations in homes across the city. If you live in Williamsburg you can't help but be influenced by that effort. Go to Williamsburg during the winter holidays and you will see what I mean.
She adapted those ideas to a smaller scale and the miniature fruits were created. Next, she developed the the technique for coating the fruits in wax. Finally, all that was left to do was to assemble the arrangements. First she gave them to family and friends as gifts. The word spread quickly that my grandmother was making them. Their popularity grew faster than she could make them. She eventually sold them in a few select shops and once that happened she had to enlist help.
Most of the family worked on them when my grandmother first made them and through the years all of us continued to help her, as their popularity grew. Now, I am the only one who knows all the secrets to making them and I'm the only one still producing them. Eventually, I'd like to pass this tradition forward.