Have yourself a merry little Christmas.
It is snowing and the wind is blowing hard. We are snug and warm inside - hope you are too!
Best wishes for a very Happy Holiday!


Oranges and Violets

To move away from the food blogging, I thought I would post this painting done a few years ago. It is hanging on my wall and it makes me think every now and then that I should do some large paintings again. I have been enjoying doing small paintings for the past couple of years - mostly quarter sheets. It is not exactly the best economy to be trying to sell large paintings right now, but it doesn't hurt to have a couple of "show pieces" and be ready when the economy takes a turn for the better.

Don't we all start thinking about what we are going to be doing in the new year while we are trying to wrap up the old year AND celebrate Christmas? There must be a better way to do it - like businesses and governments have a fiscal year that has nothing to do with the regular calendar year. It wouldn't work. It's not natural. There is something about the rhythm of the year since the beginning of time. I'm not gonna mess with that.


Food Blog Continued

Click image to enlarge

Carol C, this one's for you. This is the original in my mom's handwriting, with food spills and notes I have made. They are not beautiful cookies, but they are THE Christmas cookies in our family.

Winifred Olds ("recipe from . . .") had a local TV show back in the 50s and 60s in Lansing, Michigan, where I grew up.

If you can't read the writing (and here I am assuming that you'll want to) just let me know and I'll fill you in.

Oh - by the way - that isn't 23 teaspoons of anise seed! It is a 3 crossed out with a 2 beside it. If you like anise, use three, two really isn't enough if you like the taste.


Year 55

I did a LITTLE baking the past few days. I wanted to make my mother's anise crescent cookies for my brother and sister-in-law. This is year 55 for the cookies in our family. My mom started making them in 1953. I want to carry on the tradition with my grandchildren, but I did this batch by myself because of time restraints. Please don't tell 'em.

The tree is decorated, I made no-bake cookies (they aren't cookies!) and some Chex Mix, and a batch of English toffee. I'm in the mood. Tomorrow I will shop!

Notice how easily I slip into food blogging? I should at least be sketching this stuff!


Almost Finished

Douglas Lake Cottage
I finished up this demo for the Wednesday class. To give credit where credit is due, the class had a lot of good input and together we finished the painting. I'm still thinking I'll put a scraggly little pine in there to the right of the lone tree. I want to break up that space a little so the lake is not so evenly divided.

I found myself thinking about how I would do this painting in acrylic as I was doing the watercolor. In today's class we got to talking about acrylic painting, and now I am itchy to do some again.

The wind is blowing tonight and sounds very wintry. We have our Christmas tree up with the lights on it, but no ornaments yet. I did a batch of English toffee yesterday, and one batch of cookies today. I'm getting in the spirit. Oh yeah - I have to shop, don't I!


Cynthia's Lavender Jelly

I didn't come close to capturing the beautiful color, transparency, and reflected light in this jar of lavender jelly. I really enjoyed trying. The real thing just glistens like a jewel. Ummm, maybe I should have taken a picture of the real thing instead of showing you how I missed the mark. However, to me, the purpose of my journal is to experience things, not render a perfect painting.

. . . and, I am way off on the shape. Okay, some days are like that. Enjoy the journey and move on.

Cynthia's jelly is too beautiful to eat, but I happen to know how delicious it is, so of course we will eat it.

Thanks, Cynthia!


No, I haven't forgotten.

Just when I was on a roll. Now I am back to my old ways of blogging intermitently it seems. We are spending a few days having some family fun.
I hope to get in a little sketching time, but you know - best intentions. We'll see.

Thanks to all of you for reading and commenting on the November blogging. I appreciate all your nice comments!!!!


Work in Progress

I started this demo in class this morning, working form the sketch I showed here. The class made me promise not to touch it until they could watch next week. That's so hard! Do you think they would notice if I play with it just a little? It is at the point now where everything feels so wrong because it is so unfinished.

We are getting the snow that is being predicted for today and tomorrow. It is just gray and white outside and I can't see the Bay. They are talking about one to two feet - not inches - FEET. I wonder if tomorrow's class will be able to make it. I hope so! I had better go work up a demo for them. AND I'm out of reading material, so I guess I'll email my librarian husband and ask him to bring me home a book or two. It makes me panic to think of being snowed in without a good book!

Have you tried chai tea with a little chocolate in it? Yum!
Stay safe and warm.


Mid-morning Snack

This is an almost-blind-contour drawing done in ink and prisma color pencils.

I was going to do a little bit more serious painting ( there are MANY degrees of seriousness, you know) of this mini still life, but once I warmed up with the contour drawing I thought I would just do some color on it and call it good.

Now I am going to go get a sketch ready for tomorrow's class. I want to do a landscape demo for them to get everyone back in the groove after a week off.

I could use a little getting back in the groove too. I am going to paint more and eat less.



I can't stop blogging!!!
I can't go to bed without blogging. It's like brushing my teeth - I can't sleep if I haven't done it.

This is what it looked like here this morning. A winter wonderland. This is taken out our front window. We live on a corner and it seems to be some kind of a snowplow hub - they go around and around, very fast and very close.

My friend Karen called to see if I wanted to go to the new thrift store. "Nooo, I'd have to leave the house!" "Five minutes", she said. I scored a great find - a book on nature journaling that I had been borrowing from various friends for a couple of years. $2.50 and it looks like new. It pays to leave the house once in awhile.