Sunday, May 29, 2011

Monday, December 13, 2010


Monday, November 22, 2010

Flowers and Crumpets

For all of my flower essence friends out there! We'll meet some day, and we'll all have tea and crumpets!
P.S. - Don't forget that anyone is invited, as long as they play nice, and have a big appetite!!! There will be so many crumpets, and so much brandy!! Oops..I mean...TEA!!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Play in Full Color

My puppy Mable loves her purple ball that I found for her at the local petshop. She literally won't leave it alone, she has to be close to it at all times! It's like her security blanket. I finally got a picture of her where she wasn't flinging her head around like a crazed little monkey. She still kind of looks like one though! :0)

Side note: She's a Beaglier pup (6 months old). Beagle mixed with Cavalier King Charles Spaniel. She's a hound but with webbed feet!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Akara Cakes!

The other night I made Nigerian Akara black eyed bean pancakes with a special made-from-scratch chili sauce! The cakes are made from mashing and blending a mixture of black eyed beans (mashed beans that simulate a flour are called a 'pulse' in traditional African cooking), onion, garlic, salt and pepper to taste, a dash of olive oil, and optional chilis. Then you dollop some of the batter onto a hot skillet; frying them in red palm oil, or an oil you have on hand which in my case was grapeseed oil. It turned out really delicious and I felt transported by all of the flavors. The chili sauce I made was a simple mixture of around 3 medium red chilis (take most of the seeds out) diced up finely, a tablespoon of dijon mustard, a little bit of water, a few teaspoons of cane sugar, and some diced up tomato (preferably yellow). I also added a bit of basil and thyme. Stir all of these things together in a hot skillet and let it get a little bit thick. Enjoy the smell, because it is awesome! And don't worry about exact measurements...go by the smell, and taste along the way. Then spoon onto the plate and enjoy! It goes great with the pancakes, and a side of fresh corn.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Gao Get Yourself One of These Pears

In Hebei Province, there once was a mastermind who crafted all of the pears in his tree to grow into little hanging Buddha's. Doesn't this sound like an enticing fairy tale? It's actually a reality for Gao Xianzhang, a farmer from a small village outside of Beijing.

It took him about six years to perfect, or pearfect, this special horticultural technique which was inspired by the book, "Journey to the West", in which immortality can be obtained by consuming imaginary baby-shaped fruits. “It was more difficult than I expected," Gao has reported. "You have to test when the best time is to put the molds on the pears, and when to take them off again. If you leave the molds on for too long, the pears start to rot inside."
Eventually, Gao was able to grow enough of these magical molded fruits to sell at market for a hefty price, approximately eight U.S. dollars per pear. Now Gao is doing quite well for himself, especially compared to the other farmers in his region. Gao has already begun considering what a Western market might expect from a molded pear. He believes Bible characters could be popular, as well as Charlie Chaplin. I can see myself purchasing any or all of these, as long as the pear tasted delicious of course!

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Small Beauty

Along the path in the woods I come across a dangling wonder. A silkworm spinning under the evening sun.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Treats in the Yard

I just found this photo of me at my grandparent's house. My grandmother took this picture back in October of 1992 after we picked pears from the tree in the back yard! I just had to post it! I was only eight years old here. I can still distinctly smell and taste those delicious pears, which I haven't tasted in commercially sold pears since. Maybe one day I'll have my own pear tree just like Nonna's where I can watch them grow and bee pollinated by insects!

Friday, June 11, 2010

Nonna's Bluebird

In flight, I spread my dreams from my heart to my wings
they catch the wind and dance about
near clouds, above the seas
they might form a rainbow
or a fiery cry
from a brand new baby.
They might give another bird strength
it needs to fly.
My dreams, my simple freedoms
They are me, I am them.
Just the breeze and my wings...

*photo and poem for my beautiful grandmother Helen, who passed recently. May she always inspire me to be the best woman I can be

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Wild Roses and Soap Bottles

I found some brilliant magenta wild roses today on a drive to see the prairies. I placed them in an old Dr. Bronner's soap bottle as I had no vase. They sat in the car after having been picked with dust blowing up all around them and the sun blasting down...but they were hearty and took it well. A little wilted for now, but I'm sure they'll firm up now with the fresh water from the spring.

The roses only enhance the text circling the label...from Emmanuel Bronner to ALL...

"All-One our soul, self-discipline the key to love, uniting All-One above!"

And don't they enhance the grasses! Here they are in their home sweet home. I just had to stop for a picture...and to cut just a few. There were plenty more, but I didn't want to take too many.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

No More Bootie Attempts!

I finally tackled the difficulty of knitting socks! I made these soft knitted booties for my sister Eva as a Christmas gift in '09. Wow, the pattern was quite intense as it is filled with cable stitches, but I think it was well worth it since Eva loves to lounge around in them over in France. La dee da!!
I can't wait to find more patterns I'm interested in. Hopefully I'll be able to figure out how to decipher the hieroglyphics that come along with knitting projects. It's always a challenge! My mom bought me some delicious silk/bamboo blended yarn recently, which I might try for socks. I think that would be too luxurious! That reminds me ... I need to get knitting! Perfect time to do so, with the recent heavy snowfall - I might need to borrow Eva's booties!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Adel Leaves A Hero Behind

Adel saw the kids chatting on the nearby hill, and clumsily loosened grip on her childhood companion. He fell to the ground with a thump, as she skipped off hastily in the direction of her peers to hear of the latest gossip.

This latest drawing is for Illustration Friday's new topic, "Clumsy". We've all been there! As for Adel, her clumsiness had some intentional undertones ...

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Bremman and His Bewilderment

This week's Illustration Friday topic is "Wilderness". Bremman the Bear has wandered far from his cozy cottage into a seemingly endless forest. It's completely wild, and he is beginning to wonder if it's normal to feel heart racing fear and childlike curiosity at the same time ... just as he is starting to wander too far, a strange bird calls down to him telling him it's best to return home.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Teacup Teddy Giveaway

Meet little Ulla ... completely handsewn and only 3.75 inches tall!

Illustrator and teddy bear artist Louisa Bauer is having a teddy bear giveaway on her sweet blog Mouse Tales. Just click HERE to post a comment on her blog to be added to the drawing! It's so easy! And don't worry, if you don't win the bear, you may just win 2 free prints from her Etsy shop, or last but not least ... you could win a bag of goodies!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Belle is confined only ten minutes more!

Belle the bear is confined in her chair
She is not free until the plate is clean!
Poor Belle, Poor Belle
What shall she do?
It looks like she must eat up her food!

This week's Illustration Friday topic is "Confined". I thought about being a child again, and all the ways they are confined in order to achieve a level of safety and security. Cribs, car seats, even diapers ... Poor Belle wishes she could eat at the big table with the rest of the family. Only in time ...