Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween all you ghosties and goblins!

Are you ready for Halloween? We are! Actually this is a photo of my two oldest children and I that was taken when we lived out on the Aleutian Islands off the coast of Alaska. We were having a church party at the house because the weather on Adak was usually very rainy and windy. We had bobbing for apples, donuts tied to strings suspended from the ceiling (you have to try and eat them off the string without touching them), just to name a couple of fun games. And then before everyone left they went "trick or treating" down our hall and into the kitchen and laundry room. Each family had an adult at the door of a room to give away candy. I had so much fun getting ready for this party! Bryans and Stephanies costumes were put together with finds from the thrift store for about $5 total. I made the hat and wig Bryan is wearing from felt, yarn and a silk flower. We took down all the curtains and put up our makeshift haunted house window coverings made from dyed sheets that were ripped and torn. I love being able to do that sort of thing.
Here's hoping you have a very safe and fun day and night!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

A little tingle......

As I was sitting sculpting this morning I felt a brief but delightful tingle of excitement run through me at the thought of the upcoming season. I am not rushing to Christmas by any means as I love Autumn and want to fully enjoy this time of year right up until the day after Thanksgiving. But all the jolly fellows I'm working on along with the cooler mornings are lifting my spirits and getting me thinking of how I will decorate this year. I'm not worried about what I'm getting as there's not much I really want anyway except to see my children and grandchildren. But I love to decorate for the holidays and create a feeling of warmth and love and a sense of giving in the spirit of the great gift that has been given to us. My family looks forward to the lights and cozy decor as well, so.....I'm starting to really get excited!

How about you? What do you look forward to this time of year?

Friday, October 24, 2008

Santa stopped by last night....

and he and I shared a plate of pumpkin oatmeal cookies. Yes, we are both cookie-aholics and so we get together often to support each other in our addiction. If you can't beat em join em.
He's off to visit ebay to see who's home he will be at next. If you want him to stop for a stay at your home, look him up.

He is a hand sculpted piece, with clay and paper mache over a tall gourd. A one of a kind signed original, he will delight all who visit your home for years to come.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Frosty friends

There's a chill in the air, and snow is on it's way soon enough. These handsome fellas have dressed for the occasion with their stocking caps, and warm wraps. The first jolly gentleman has a pocket made of clay that I textured to look like waffle weave fabric. His pocket is filled with antique fruits from Blumchens, cinnamon sticks, pipe cleaner candy canes I twisted my self, and glittered "pinion" branches. He is dusted with vintage mica flakes and sparkly teeny tiny glitter. He is a large fellow, standing 12" tall.

The second snowman is the same height, and carries a feather tree from Blumchens, as well as the fruit and leaf embellisments on his hat. He has also been dusted with vintage mica flakes and sparkly glitter. You can click on their photos to find them up for purchase or auction.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

SSHHHHHHH.......don't tell Martha but....

I took one of her recipes and fixed it. Here's the deal, I save recipes from magazines in hopes of trying them out someday so I'm trying to see which ones are keepers and which aren't. With high gas prices, and higher grocery costs I'm also trying to use what I have on hand. So here's my version of Martha's Savory Fall Stew from her Original Classics cookbook, and how I fixed some problems I found. I list my ingredients and if different I put her original ingredients in parenthesis.

2 T. olive oil 12 oz. hot italian sausage, cut into small chunks
1 med. onion, peeled and chopped ( 12 cipollini or pearl onions, peeled)
1 14.5 oz. can stewed tomatoes (1 1/2 c. canned crushed tomatoes)
5 c. water + 5 tsp chicken bullion (3 c. homemade chicken stock or low sodium canned broth) I found that 3 cups of broth would not give enough liquid for stew
1 handful combined fresh rosemary, thyme, oregano, Or 2 t. dried italian herbs
1 - 1 1/2 lb. butternut squash peeled, seeded and cubed ( 2 1/2 lb butternut squash - too much!)
3 carrots cut into 1/2" pieces
1 medium size zucchini, cubed (3 parsnips, cut into 2" sticks, 1 fennel bulb, halved, cored, cut into 1/4" slices)
2 c. beet greens, chopped (12 brussel sprouts, trimmed, cut in half)
1 1/2 cups macaroni or shell noodles addition for hubby
Salt and pepper to taste

Heat oil in a large soup pot over medium heat. Cook sausage, stirring until it breaks into small pieces and is not longer pink. Remove sausage with slotted spoon, and set aside.
Pour off all but 1 T of fat and discard. Raise heat to medium high, and add the onion; cook stirring, until golden, about 8 minutes. Add tomatoes, broth and herbs, simmer over medium heat until the liquid starts to thicken, about 20 minutes. Add everything else but the beet greens and noodles, cover and simmer until tender, about 10 minutes. Add beet greens and noodles and turn down to medium low. Simmer until noodles are done. Season to taste and serve hot.
Martha claims this will only serve 4 done her way, but this really makes a large pot of soup for about 8 people even without the changes I made due to the amount of squash called for in the original recipe. It's delicious either way I'm sure, serve with home made buttermilk bisquits or cornbread. My husband loves it!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Mother Earth's Folly

From time to time I like to sit and ponder on Autumn and this came to me one cool Fall day in North Pole.

Mother Earth's Folly

As Mother Earth sits waiting....
does she ponder what she's done?
For though summer's greenery once clothed her,
she's finding she now has none.

Mother Earth was tricked you see,
by Autumn's promise of beauty resplendent.
Plying with robes of gold and crimson,
on Earth's vainglory was Autumn dependent.

Only Autumn knew the truth,
of how quickly would her wares.....
fade, fall away and be gone,

leaving Earth cold and stripped bare.

Soon will come Old Man Winter,
with his blankets of soft pure white.
Out of kindness he will clothe her....
having had pity on Mother Earth's plight.

But for now she sits awaiting....
Earth's bareness for all to see.
A lesson there's no mistaking,
of the folly of vanity.

Sheryl Parsons

Monday, October 13, 2008

Taking a break from sculpting....

Sometimes we need to shake things up a bit, and I don't want to lose my painting rhythm, so I took a break last week to do this painting for a competition. It is based on the Book of Mormon scripture Alma 12:15 and is symbolic of the opportunity the Savior gave us to repent and be with him and Heavenly Father some day through his Atonement. This is a 36" by 24" inch acrylic painting, the largest I've ever attempted. I hope it gives you something to think about and look forward to.

Friday, October 3, 2008

AHAO Alice in Halloweenland Challenge on ebay

It's time for all the lovely ghosties and goblins to come out; even Alice is lost in Halloweenland right now. The Cheshire Cat, has dressed in his best costume, and waits for Alice to coming tripping down the path....

AHAO is the premier ornament artisan group on ebay. We are having the most fun challenge titled "Alice in Halloweenland" and so far we have some very fun pieces up for your consideration. So if you are looking for some unique and fabulous pieces to add to your Halloween collection, stop by ebay today.

Oh, and this wicked looking face gazing at you is up for your consideration as well. Click on the title of this post for a look at all we have......