Monday, December 31, 2007
I'm just poppin in for my last blog entry of 2007! Just a little break from our little party to wish you all a good one!
It's cliche, but just where did this year go?!
So cheers! And have a drink for me! I wish you all a happy, healthy and prosperous 2008, and let's pray for peace for our planet this year!!
Saturday, December 29, 2007
One of the things that I did while in my blogging absence was assist with this mural.
My son's teacher asked me if I would help with the backdrop for the kid's musical/play. I normally would love to do something like this, but I had only wished it wasn't 2 weeks before Christmas! She couldn't have choosen a worse time to have to do a large project like this!
Luckily, the anticipation of it was far worse than the actual doing of it.
I quickly sketched some ideas at home. Got the large butcher paper from the school. Taped together four LARGE pieces of it (that was actually the hardest part since I had no help with it. This part would definitely be a lot easier with at least one adult helper.) Then I drew out the design. The kids came into the art room in groups of 5 and painted it. I supplied their pallettes. By fifth grade they should be over the incredible desire to just mix the colors into a big mess. Well most were, all but one!
We surprisingly got finished with just one session, each group coming to paint for 15 minutes each (27 kids). I quickly did some finishing touches like outlining with black.
It turned out pretty cute, I thought. And it fit in well with their "Brown County Fair" musical, which was based on tall tales of America. Nothing beats children singing and performing at Christmas time!!
Wednesday, December 26, 2007
Yes it's true, I, like so many others, have been sick!
On December 12 I had the most incredible night out, seeing the beloved Squirrel Nut Zippers! And what a night it was! Thanks to Wesley, we were able to go back stage after the show and meet them! We got pictures, and Wesley got some autographs (along with some little doodles.) It was very cool, and he was jazzed to share some of his sketch book with the band. They were very nice, and the show was so excellent. I'm ready to see them again. They've got to be one of my favorites of all time!! So many thanks go out to my bestest of girlfriends for the tickets!
I love this photo of Katharine Whalen, She's really looking at Wes, and giving him a smile! She always dresses so wonderfully, and her voice is amazing. Kind of Billie Holiday meets Betty Boop. I love it. I also always love Jimbo Mathus, the singer-songwriter-guitarist-extraordinaire. They are so much fun to watch, and dance to. I'll be looking for their return to the West Coast. Here's another good link to their unofficial site.
Anyway, because all of my allergies lately, and some complications from that, a simple cold became one of the worst cases of coughing fits I've had in a long time. I was having the worst tickles, and it lasted for the 12 days of Christmas! Finally, THE day before Christmas Eve I was feeling almost back to normal. Because of it, my Christmas plans were really skrewed up! I didn't get my cards out, didn't make the gifts I planned on making, didn't do all of my baking, didn't update my blog with lots of pretty stuff, etc, etc, etc. Oh well, sometimes you've just got to let things go, and accept them for what they are. You can't always be a Martha Stewart Christmas Wonder!
So I've got some updating to do on this here blog. Because some of the things that happened have got to be shared, if even for only myself.
I do hope that all of you who celebrate, had an enjoyable Christmas!!!
Tuesday, December 11, 2007
Cash Advance Loans
I saw this in blog land and just out of curiosity had to try it. While typing in my address I was thinking that I must be elementary school level. But no! To my honest amazement... My lil' ol' Blog's a genius!!
Their stats must be a little hay wire!
Monday, December 10, 2007
In yesterday's post I talked about my first real Christmas tree in a long time. What I was meaning was my "main" tree. I've actually had a small tree in my bedroom for a few years. I use to get a small potted variety. Last year I got this cute, retro style of tree in green, and added these cool purple-pink lights to my window. I've repeated it this year. I love the look!
I printed up some more of my Sassy Elf Christmas cards today. They're available at my Etsy shop. I must get my new design ready, carved, and printed soon... like tomorrow!! I thought I'd get it done today, but now it's pretty late and I've got some package preparations to do. Brad will have to do the mailing for me, since we've only got one vehicle shoveled out. Oh darn, I've got to stay home! I actually enjoy it. Some times I just need a break from the social scene at the school. Snow's a great excuse!
Sunday, December 09, 2007
The little storm from yesterday turned into quite a dumping! That made for a stay-at-home kind of day. Cold and beautiful!
We've been decorating a little at a time. I needed a tree topper so I thought I'd make one. I got this dove at my local thrift store. I cut the wings off and glued on just a piece of the wing.(The original wings were just too big, and the real feathers didn't glitter well) Glittered it silver, made a pink-glittered, Good-Witch-Glenda crown, and gave it a little message to hold. He looks rather stoic perched proudly at the top.
This is actually my first "real" Christmas tree since I grew up. In the past, for many years, I had a manzanita branch for a tree. I was suddenly ready for a change. I found it at the local thrift store. It was in an enormous box, and they just didn't want to put it together to see if it was complete. So what a score for me! The over load of ornaments works, and looks, way better than on the manzanita. A branch was fun and unique. But this new tree is very refreshing, and I'm lovin it!!
Saturday, December 08, 2007
Last night we were busy making some snowflakes. Later in the night we had out first snow of the season!
The large rainstorm last weekend, rain all day yesterday, and now snow most of the day today... How glorious to have the moisture, and to help end our drought! Ah, the relief of the fire danger season ending, or at least a break in it for a while!
Today we made some more snow flakes and decorated our front door windows. Thanks to our room parent, Barbara M., Wesley has been very inspired to make lots of these. They look red in this no flash pix, but we actually made pink and white.
A few years back I read about a family who had a holiday tradition where they had a snowflake night. They would cut their flakes, then have contests on most prettiest and other assorted categories. They would have a full celebration of the snowflake, and enjoy hot chocolate and goodies for this night. We had a little version, years ago when Wesley was 3 or 4. We didn't carry on with the tradition like the other family. But we did have a good time cutting these out, and they look so festive in our window, with our winter wonderland outside!
Friday, December 07, 2007
I have been in love with the little characters created over at papermoongallery for quite some time! How could you not instantly love these little whimsies?! This chihuahua is such a riot! Too cute!
There are little creations made of felted wool, as well as papier mache. The quality is stunning. What unique, fun gifts these would make! Especially if they were addressed to me!!
Find her website here. And how cool, Kerry's made the cover of Art Doll Quarterly!
Wednesday, December 05, 2007
I love all things retro when it comes to Christmas! I seem to enjoy the kitchier-side of Christmas, rather than the perfectly trimmed, serious stuff. Although I really do love ALL Things Christmas, really!
While at my mother's house this weekend, we helped her with her tree. She's got a lot of wonderful goodies as well! This little treasure was found at a yard sale a couple of years ago. I was so jealous that I hadn't found it! I love this trio of carolers. And it's a music box too!
These 2 little elves are some of my all time favorites! They use to belong to my ex-step Dad, but they mysteriously ended up with my mom after the split. That's one reason I love them so much, just happy memories. Sorry, Bob G. but I really think we (or at least myself) loved them ever-so-much more than you ever could!! I have a collection of Christmas elves and these probably started my love affair with them!
We are still in the process of putting on the holiday duds in our house. I hope to share some pix soon!
Thursday, November 29, 2007
I guess people want to keep their arms warm because my gloves are my most popular item lately. I think they also make a good gift, and of course people are buying lots of those right now! And they are so trendy! So as a result, part of my time is going to crocheting lots of arm warmers!
I'm going out of town for the weekend. It's my cutie, twin nephews' second birthday. I'll have to bring my yarn and keep busy down there. I just have no time to spare right now. I know everyone feels the same.
You can see a selection of these in my arm warmer section on Etsy. And if you're not a member of Etsy yet, by all means sign up! It's easy and you can find the most superb, unique gifts there! I've got a good start on my shopping already done, mosty from Etsy. It beats going to the mall any day!
Monday, November 26, 2007
I'm always impressed with the amount of unique items I keep finding on Etsy! This week I found these very uniquely cool boxes. Made from what? Record boxes and the records themselves. This shop, artyfakt, looks to be a pretty newish shop on Etsy. And that's always fun to find too!
I love these boxes! She seems to really do an exceptional job of constructing them, too. And there are many wonderful types to choose from. You're bound to find one suitable for any music lover in your life. I just wish I had more money to buy some! Well maybe soon once my sales pick up!!
Friday, November 23, 2007
I hope you all had a spectacular Thanksgiving! Mine was enjoyable, in it's own, humbly-unique way. I'm a bit of an unconventionalist and Thanksgiving is right up there at the top of the list.
First I thought I'd share with you my favorite part of the meal... the cranberries. When I was growing up it seemed cranberries were always the weird glop from the can. I didn't care for them much. Then I grew up and started making my own, the old fashioned way. I also started cooking them on my wood stove years ago when I only had a hot plate and toaster oven. (Difficult times in the kitchen!) I loved the smell and the old way so much, I continue it to this day.
I add orange juice, apples, maple syrup, and sugar. And let it simmer for quite a while, OOh, it smells so good! And pretty too!
I've learned through the years to make the cranberries early so that they can cool before dinner. They don't taste as tart, and I just think they're better cold.
Here's the rest of my some what odd meal. It's vegetarian, and actually this part is vegan. (We also eat some tahini dip earlier in the day and that has yogurt in it). The roast is pretty good even though you turkey eaters will probably think it's so unusual! It's made with tofu, lentils, quinoa, rice, nuts, oatmeal, celery, onions, garlic and spices. It's kind of like a stuffing with protein. It's probably the most work of all the meal.
Instead of mashed potatoes we have a mixed roasted roots ensemble. Then you get your yams and potatoes all in one. Some simple corn in honor of the Indians at the first Thanksgiving. Why I serve spinach, I don't know, just needed some green. And also in honor of the pilgrims... Beer! That's probably the most filling of all!
Top that off with your more traditional pumpkin and cherry pie (with whipped cream) and coffee. YUM YUM!
And what am I thankful for? Family, Friends, Health and Home and yes all of you lovelies able to read and post a comment here on my blog. Enjoy your Holidays!!
Wednesday, November 21, 2007
I realized I haven't introduced you yet to our new addition to the family! We've had her about a month now. She's very cute, even if her eyes are a little "dull". Well that's what we've decided! She's a very bold little cat and loves to play fetch. She's the second cat I've had in my life that plays the game. And she is VERY good at it! She needs to give our dog Ziggy a lesson on it. But oh, the trials of a little cat in the house... climbing on your things and knocking everything over, chewing your stuff, interrupting your crocheting because yarn is just so much fun, waking you up when you're in desperate need of sleep, and let's not forget ALLERGIES!
Now I don't know what I'm allergic to, but they have coincidently gone hay wire right around the time she arrived at her house. But I always have had cats, this is my 3rd one right now. Only sometimes do my allergies go off, even when a cat is constantly in my house. So why now?? My other cats come and go, in and out, throughout the day. This cat so far is in all the time.
I just don't know, but I am going a little crazy with the allergies going on for so long lately!!!! Maybe it's the dry, dry, weather we've been having, and drought. I really need for that to change NOW!
Saturday, November 17, 2007
Last night the Theme of Consciousness on Jim Ladd's radio program was PEACE. I requested, and heard, "Throwing Stones" by Grateful Dead. I cheated this week on supplying any art onto his site. I had so many "peace" images already available, so I used them instead. I painted this Peace Girl about a year ago.
Just last week I made a print of this image into a resin pendant. I'm so happy that I got a new mold for making my pendants. It's nice to have a variety of shapes.
I also just recently made the packaging for them. They're all ready for gift giving, and are available in my shop now.
This is a vintage drawing of mine from 1990. It was perfect last night while "Imagine" was being broadcast. I like the Strawberry Fields Forever clothing. It's one of MANY Beatles images that I've done over the years.
Thursday, November 15, 2007
This chard was just too beautiful to go and be eaten and not have it's picture taken! I could not make anything more lovely than this piece of art from nature. So I got out my handy camera, took it's pix, then pulverized it into juice. It's yummy mixed with apple, carrot, celery, beets, and parsley is always a must for my juice. Healthy goodness!
Wednesday, November 14, 2007
I'm trying to get more Christmas items in my Etsy shop. Although I'm a little late, as usual! Really organized people have been onto Christmas items far longer.
These cards were printed from my stamp that I designed and carved. They were printed with acrylic paint and dusted with fine fairy dust.
This design is a sassy little elf. She's all ready for her party, martini in hand. I love how retro she is. I'm big into all things "Retro Christmas!"
The colors are not your traditional Christmas colors. That's how I usually make my Christmas cards.
Those of you that receive a physical Christmas card from me may recognize this as my 2006 design. I've been creating a new Christmas card design for 17 years now. This elf was the second time that I made them from a hand carved stamp. Usually they have been copies. I better get busy and think up this year's. I wonder if I'll ever run out of ideas?
Here they are in my Etsy shop.
Tuesday, November 13, 2007
These felted brooches are purty-purty! They are created by KeriRounding over on Etsy. These little anenomes would surely look alive perched on your clothes!
They are made with "a mixture of wet and needle felting techniques." They are not your average looking brooch, and the colors are quite stunning! Go to kerirounding.com for more!
Sunday, November 11, 2007
My drawing for TOC this week was a little hokey! But it's pretty fun, and light also, so I like it.
Jim Ladd and Theme Of Consciousness started streaming this past Friday. In honor of Jim finally going world wide, the theme was "world," of course. Anyone who enjoys free-form rock and roll should listen to Jim. They only allow him to stream on Fridays, 8pm-1am (Pacific Time). He's on 95.5 KLOS.
I just love any theme/challenge to try and think up and create a piece of art to match. Some might be clever, others are just fun.
Thursday, November 08, 2007
I started making these upcycled record cover boxes a few years ago to uniquely wrap any gift that would fit into them. Last year I started offering them for sale. And I'm happy to have even more to choose from this year.
This cover is particularly special, in my opinion. Brad first told me it was "Father Knows Best." I wasn't sure. But after reading the back cover I discovered it was the "Donna Reed Show" family. I didn't recognize Donna Reed. I know Donna Reed best as Mary from one of my most favorite movies, "It's A Wonderful Life." This photo is her in 1964. But I thought that made this cover even more fabulous!
I collect these records all year, well I always collect records of all sorts and have for over 20 years now. I use only records that are beyond their use for music, either because of damage, or just plain boring, and insignificant. But the images on old records are simply too much fun to let go to waste sitting in a stack. So I love to give them a new life.
Once I started selling these boxes I started coating them with layers of acrylic medium and a final glossy varnish. The covers can get pretty brittle with age, and these coatings make the box more sturdy. I also add a piece of matching decorative paper for the bottom of the box.
They look so lovely just tied with ribbon sitting under your tree. They are a great way to hold your cards, stationery, or other little trinket items. They fit in perfectly with any vintage inspired Christmas decor. They are just so cute!
I've got some for sale in the Christmas section of my Etsy shop, now.
Wednesday, November 07, 2007
This is a good lesson to do with fifth graders. I did this lesson with my son's class a couple of weeks ago.
First I attempted to describe to them what foreshortening was. I was mainly trying to just introduce the word to them. I had an example of a drawing using foreshortening. I showed them my example first, and asked them who might see this view. I was pleased when they said an ant. Then we did the drawing together. First shoes, hands, head and body. We talked about the patterns on their shoes. They could try to simplifiy their shoes, or make up their own pattern. I talked about the details of the hands a little. We discussed breifly the basic porportions of a face... the eyes half way down the head, etc. I had them personalize their clothing and hair and maybe to add a hat. We drew in pencil first, then outlined in black markers. Finally they colored in with crayons. If they had time, I encouraged them to color the back ground, trying to make it a contrasting color. A background color really makes the design pop. Drawing the body was a little hard for some kids, so I was needed to help with that a little. It was a perfect lesson for fifth grade, not sure if I'd go much younger. It took the whole hour, with only a couple not finishing the project. That was perfect.
I like how Wesley (above) and DS (below) drew Mr. Toast and friends on their shirt. Even my son advertises for Etsy sellers!
I get my art lesson ideas from a lot of different sources. Sometimes they magically pop in my head. A lot of times just looking at adult art gives me an idea for a kid version. Other times I search books, and the web. This lesson came from theartkids. They have a lot of really good art lessons for kids.
Saturday, November 03, 2007
I'm amazed with this paper sculpture created by elsita! It is quite stunning, as is everything in this shop on Etsy!
Along with the paper sculptures, you'll find very charming toys both of the 3D variety, as well as 2D paper dolls. If you ever watch the sold items on Etsy's Time Machine 2, you've probably seen some of elsita's work fly by. Her work is of such fine quality, it's just no wonder. You'll also find her original and prints of her very adorable illustrations. She also makes jewlelry, clothing, bags, needlework and books. A very sweet shop, indeed. And an added bonus, that I always enjoy, elsita has a very enjoyable blog as well. If you haven't yet discovered elsita, then by all means you should go check out her shop NOW!
Tonights TOC theme was "ride". I made a lot of requests with a lot of them being "cowboyish." Near the end of the show, Jim played one of my requests, and I even got the credit for it. It was "Me and My Uncle" by the Grateful Dead. He was playing a very cowboyish set, so I hammed it up. During the Dead song, I commented "Yee-Haw" on Jim's Myspace page. So when Jim came back to announce who had made the requests he said "Me and My Uncle was requested by Saffron on MySpace... Yee Haw!" That was pretty funny! I knew being corny would get some kind of notice! Not sure if my humble, drawing addition to the comments was noticed or not. But I do like the little cowgirl ridin her pony!
The good news is Jim Ladd's show will start streaming next Friday. I'll be sure to post the link when it's available. He'll only be streaming on Friday's because of some weird laws that keep him from completely being himself while streaming. I take it, since Friday is all requests, he's found a loop hole to jump through, and bypass this restraint. So that will be cool. Although it could be late for you out on the East Coast since he's on from 8 pm - 1 am, Pacific time!
Wednesday, October 31, 2007
Amazing! I got this posted before midnite! My life is too busy right now, so I'm sorry that I haven't been up on things lately. On top of the hectic schedule, there's also the image issues that blogspot's been having lately. I hope those probs are over.
We had a fun time down town for the annual Halloween Parade and Carnival. Wesley was Frankenstein, I was a very purple wizardess, and Brad was creepy with an arrow through his forehead (yuck). My house is a COMPLETE mess, with the puzzle-of-a-closet completely tore apart. On account of getting my costume together pretty last minute. My costume from 7 years ago, Mary Poppins, had to change... couldn't find my Mary hat. Oh well, there was another M.P. in town this year. So my unique wizard did fine, and it was the first time I had worn this lovely purple dress from the thrift store. I also had THE tallest hat in town on, one that I had made for Wesley when he was "Dark Magician" from Yu-Gi-Oh, back in first grade.
It was a very lovely evening, and quite balmy, well, at least until about 7 pm. The trees seemed to have changed color early this year. The oaks are past their prime, and have changed from orange to brown, ready to finish with their dropping of the leaves. And everything is still quite ready for rain.
Enjoy your All Hallows Eve! What's left of it!
Wednesday, October 24, 2007
Here's my October entry for NibbleFest. The theme is "Shadows".
Is this kittie Naughty or Nice? Its evil side seems to be showing itself.
This is an original acrylic ACEO (2.5x3.5 inches).
I've been preoccupied with thoughts of fire this week, as most in Southern California. I feel for all the people affected, and since I too live in a fire-prone forest, my mind has been filled with intense worry. I feel so very blessed that our mountain is not on fire this year, and I say that as I knock on wood. A minor thing that happened as a result of the weather, we were with out power for 30 hours. That is challenging! But again I say how blessed and lucky we are at this time.
So because of the circumstances I'm a little behind. I hope to have my Etsy Pick-O-The-Week up tomorrow. The rest of my week is crazy-busy, so if you don't see it up on Thursday, then you can find it here probably on Monday. Some times wednesdays are so busy, and I was lucky to get this little painting done!
Hang in there So Cal, and I'm praying for rain!! Oh, and a gentle rain, not mud-slide-causing rain!
Saturday, October 20, 2007
The theme for TOC this week was any song with a "question" in the TITLE. That was challenging to come up with a drawing to go with the theme. But I did come up with this. I wanted to get this posted when Jim played one of the many "who do you love" songs. I even had a feeling he'd do a set with a variety of them, and I was right. Luckily he did these songs later in the night, so I was able to get the pix on during the second one, The Doors version. I like that one and the Quicksilver Messenger Service versions a lot. I would've posted it during the first song, but so many hang ups kept going on. You name it, it malfunctioned. It's so frustrating when I'm in a hurry and dumb little things go wrong with the computer!!
Anyway this is just a simple little doodle that I love to do on a Friday night. No pressure to sell, just have fun and be imaginative.
Tuesday, October 16, 2007
OH, Yay! My images are able to be uploaded! Well at least some of them!
It is a beautiful time in Autumn, in the mountains. This is a pine forest, so we have mainly trees that don't change colors. But there is still quite a bit of color-changing happening. And that makes for a lovely scene, everywhere you go.
I took some shots last week while out in about around town. There are many cute, quaint cabins all aglow with their colorful trees.
I really need one of these extra vibrant Japanese Maples.
Soon I'll take a photo of my own yard on display.
Friday, October 12, 2007
I had too much fun making these little characters out of paper clay! They're little "action figures" with moveable arms and legs. And as an added bonus I've listed them on Etsy with a somewhat matching greeting card.
The cat is a little goofy, while this pumpkin is a bit more serious.
And slightly demonic and creepy... here's a Halloween devil...
There's also a reproduction print being used for one of the cards. A painting from 3 years ago. This guy is out "Hitchin' and Trickin'!"
If you like them, then by all means go to the Halloween section of my shop on Etsy!
Wednesday, October 10, 2007
Look at this ever-so-wonderful Esty shop that I just found over the weekend! How hard to find a favorite thing in this shop. In honor of Halloween I chose this eerie loveliness..."beautifully vampiric" print which is on this fabulous bag!
babastudioPrague is a most unique shop with fantastic limited edition prints, some of which are printed on wonderful cotton and silk shoulder bags, totes, and wristlets. Plus their lovely images are being made into a tarot deck featuring the delightful Bohemian Cats. The Baroque Bohemian Cats' Tarot is a wonderful place to look at all the cats as tarot images.
The shop owners describe this shop best... "At "baba studio" we love old stories, strange symbols, fragments of images... We're surrounded in Prague by art and architecture of the Baroque, Rococco, Victorian and Art Nouveau eras."
"The Knight of Wands is a Siberian cat from Moscow (now living in Prague). As one of our friends said on seeing his portrait, 'If that cat was a guy I'd go out with him!'" (taken from their description of this handsome hero.)
I have to agree. And he does remind me of my own Phoebus.
If you are mainly interested in their cats, it looks like they are starting a new Etsy shop exclusively cat-like...BohemianCats. Both shops are equally wonderful, and if you're looking to buy me something, I'd love anything there!
And go to the blog, it's also very enjoyable!