Wednesday, December 2, 2020

Winter Time

Hi everyone. Day 2 of the month means it is time for Second on the Second over at Bleubeard and Elizabeth's blog .
Today I have a winter page for you which was originally posted on January 24, 2016.  


Here's the link to the original post: Winter Night. It isn't arctic cold yet in New Hampshire, nor is it actually winter yet either,  but I've pulled out all my winter supplies, so I 've been making a few wintery pages.
Yesterday our tempertuates were fairly warm, but the cold that has taken over part of the country is moving on into New England.
This polar bear is one of my favorite pages. I like the sky background and also how I made the snow at the bottom. It's definitely a page I want to see again, and I hope you do also.

I also have a new page today for Tracey's  The Meaning Of challenge at Art Journal Journey


My background represents the woods, the  green for the pine boughs, the cold blue for a winter's sky, the brown for frozen ground. The image is one I came across while cleaning out old magazines this fall. I really liked it, and it reminds of both the holidays  as well as nature. I am definitely a nature person.
I added some die cut snowflakes. I used origami paper to cut them, which is one of my favorite techniques. I like it because it gives the snow a bit more ephemeral almost transparent but not quite quality, which is sometimes snow has when it is falling lightly from the sky.  The quote is from Alison Bomber, but the page still needed something.
I added this bell trim I had, as well as some white lace paper trim. The quote may be about silence, but a buck (or stag) walking through the forest is not always quiet. They can be, but if you listen carefully it is amazing how loud many animals are. 

That's all for me today. Hope your December has started well for you.




 

Tuesday, December 1, 2020

The Meaning of

 Hi everyone. December is here. I can't believe  that even with this being one of the strangest years in our lifetimes that we have already made it to December.  I must say I am looking forward to 2021, but first, the holidays,! Even though they will be different this year, is still a joyful time (I hope).

And the beginning of the month means we are starting a new challenge at Art Journal Journey.

Thanks so much to Wendy for her wonderful bird challenge last month.

And now we welcome  Tracey with her challenge, The Meaning of...

Tracey wrote a great intro for her challenge. You can read about it over at the Art Journal Journey homepage. Basically it is about describing the meaning of your page.

 I picked the month of December  for the topic of the first of my page.


When I think about December I think about 3 things: the start of winter, the holidays, and finally spending time with friends and family.
I showed these in my page the following ways:
a) the dark blue background is cold color like winter tends to be, and I also used all the 
 stars as there is so much dark time in winter.
b) the 3 gentlemen could be friends or family (and luckily they look like they live in a pre-Covid world)
c) and finally, notice those gentlemen are celebrating one of this month's holidays with their Santa hats, the bits of gold and silver  and the word cheer

We at  Art Journal Journey look forward to your journal pages this month. Remember only art journal pages, both hand made and digital, are allowed, but no cards or other pieces unless they are part of your journaling page.
And I am looking forward to your meaning of stories too.

Happy December!




Monday, November 30, 2020

T Stands for Thanksgiving Weekend

 Hi everyone.  Tuesday and T Day have rolled around again, and today's post is a bit long for me. Just warning you!

For T, I thought I would share some snippets from the long Thanksgiving Holiday weekend in my world. It was a fun escape from the usual: my house got really messy, I ate too much food, I didn't get online very much, I relaxed and I got some major exercise. 

The quote in this first photo is true for my house both on Thanksgiving and the day before. It is the only room I seemed to clean up after the Thursday.


I recently bought a split pie plate that makes 2 halves  of 2 different pies. This way  I could make more flavors of pie and not have huge amounts of each. Normally I would make full sized  pies, but with this stay home Thanksgiving, it was just my daughter, my husband and myself. I wanted to be sure 


I made half pumpkin and half black bottom pecan. I had a bit of extra pumpkin filling (as I made half of each recipe) so I baked it in a ramekin. You can also see my first drink related image here too.

I always measure dry ingredients with a scale, which makes it easy to use recipes in both English or metric. This is drink reference number 2.



I also made these sourdough dinner rolls with a recipe from King Arthur. They were ok, both times I tried them. I would have prefered a roll a little lighter in texture than these came out. 

And I did make an apple pie. This one was full sized because it is the only pie everyone eats. I do wish however I made the pumpkin a full sized pie though. My daughter who told me about 10 times she does not like pumpkin pie, changed her mind this year and told me she liked the pumpkin better than  apple. Go figure.
If you are wondering why the top of the pie looks lumpy it is because I made my top crust by cutting our leaves with a cookie cutter and overlapping them.



Onto Thanksgiving.

That  day was a bit chaotic at first. When I got up and found my husband on the couch, he told me  that he had been sick a few times. Not knowing if it was something he ate or one of those covid symptoms (because I know that's how it started when my mom got sick), I wasn't  sure if I should even make the traditional turkey dinner. My daughter then decided she was going to go home so she wouldn't get sick. Luckily when she left she phoned her beau, and he talked her into coming back. I was really down when she left, especially since my husband, who had been up half the night, went back to bed.
(Originally my daughter and her beau were going to visit both his parents and then us on Thanksgiving.  With covid so bad here right now, my daughter decided it was best to skip her boyfriend's family and just come home. Some of you may not know my husband had a kidney transplant in 2017, and he is really immunosuppressed because of that. My daughter was trying not to come into contact with other people before she came here for Thanksgiving.)

I spent Thanksgiving morning disinfecting out of paranoia.


Once Katie (my daughter) returned, I cheered up. She and I made dinner, even if at that time we thought it would just be the 2 of us eating it. 
She is NOT a cook, so I love seeing her in kitchen helping me out.


My husband got up around one feeling much better.  He even carved the turkey. 


We all had a wonderful meal and NO ONE was sick. I think my husband must have eaten something on Wednesday, and his lack of much immune system got the better of him.


And in this photo above is my drink reference photo number 3. 


Friday we went and chopped our holiday tree and also put it up. Then my daughter left. (I wrote about this day here Christmas Tree if you are interested.)

My last big weekend plans were on Saturday morning when I met 3 of my work friends, and we went for a hike. Now that I am retired I don't see them that often, and it was great to catch up.


The plan was to walk up to the Stonehouse Pond overlook and then take the rest of the loop  back to  the parking area where our cars were. The landscape was rolling, and the trail was nice, although in some places it was covered with a lot of leaves. 
The overlook was quite pretty.



After an apple break, we headed  back. Not too far on the opposite side of the loop we came to a fork in the trail  There was a bright yellow sign with an arrow showing the trail going right, and some logs and branches down on the other branch of the trail more or less blocking it.
So we turned right and walked on. Luckily my friend who coordinated this walk realized she had never been this way before. (This trail is close to her home and she has walked it a couple of times before.) We pulled out our phones and yup, we were heading in the wrong direction. Not that trail maps online are always accurate, as we discovered when we each pulled up the online map. Each of us had the blue dot  showing our location at different points. Mine even had me standing in the middle of a nearby lake. 
Of course we had walked a mile off trail before this point and had to walk a mile back to the right trail.
Good things we had 4 smart brains to figure this out. Ha-ha.

We needed to go around all the branches in the trail and head that way.  I don't know what those branches were all about, but they could have been a really bad thing, (and  not just for us) had we walked a lot further and ended up far away from the parking area.


We passed a few bogs. 


And lots of  forested rolling hills.
Along the wrong trail we did pass this large glacial erratic rock covered in this really cool lichen.



And later on we saw this great lichen too.


Finally we came to this sign for the SELT trail. We knew we were back on track.


Even if we did have quite away to walk still. This sign was half way down the right trail.  We were heading to the Merry Hill Road Trailhead.


We did make it back to our cars though. We ended up walking about 8 miles, or just under 13 km. I checked my fitbit when I got home and at that point I was over 21,000 steps.

 My husband made me a yummy grilled cheese, I showered and then decided to lounge on the couch and watch  Jurassic Park:The Lost World. We'd been talking about that Jurassic Park sequel while walking, and I hadn't seen it for awhile. It seemed a good way to wrap up my day.

And if we don't get snow, one of my friend's birthday is on December 12th, and we are talking about another hike that day. I'm keeping my fingers crossed the weather holds a couple more weeks. 

OK, this is probably way too long as it is. Don't forget to stop by   Bleubeard and Elizabeth's    blog            and join us for T.

And Happy December to all of you!











Royalty


Hi everyone.  We have reached the end of November. Boy did it fly.
 More importantly, I want to thank Wendy for being such a wonderful hostess at Art Journal Journey this past month. I really enjoyed your bird theme a lot! Thanks for hosting!

I'm back with one last  page for Wendy's bird challenge at Art Journal Journey. Today I did a bit of dissecting of a gold paper seal, and I added in some birds instead. I also used a sheet of printed paper on top of my watercolor paper. Then I used some crackle paste from a pot  I came across. I wasn't sure if it was any good anymore, but it did work! I added some black ink to age my page. And some paper tape. Finally I added my royal seal, the die cut swan and the stamped and fussy cut queen. The quote came from the same set as the women did.

And I am also linking up to the last post for this year's Art Everyday Month. I really enjoyed visiting all you ladies who participated online  and meeting/remeeting some of you. Sorry, I do don't do instagram and don't usually post to Facebook so for those of you who joined in there, I'm sure I missed some nice art. and thank you Leah for hosting!

Now we are just about onto the December! 
Thanks for visiting!










 

Sunday, November 29, 2020

Holiday Cheer

 Hi everyone.  I am here with a short post today as it is day 29 over at Art Everyday Month. It's a photo post, so probably better said that is short on words, not on photos.

 This past weekend we visited our local Christmas tree farm and chopped our tree.


The farm is on the opposite side of my town. Once we parked, we grabbed a sled to help pull out the tree, as well as a saw to cut it down with. We also sanitized them and then headed off.


I only saw 1 person without a mask during the whole tree chopping adventure. Of course we do have a mask mandate in my state now.


This is my daughter. It really wasn't that cold out, but  she didn't bring a whole lot of jackets home with her.





We had little rain last summer and late spring and are in a mild drought in my area.  I thought the trees might be a little on the small side because of it. One day I drove home in this direction,  and I spotted some taller trees off to the side along the road. That's where we headed to go find our tree.




Once I snapped my photo to make it look like my husband did all the work (ha-ha-ha), the three of us pulled out the tree. 

And then we used the tree wrapper which puts string around the tree to make it easier to get it home.




I'm glad we went early as it was quite crowded by the time we left.

As my daughter was heading home later that day, we decided to put up the tree when we got home. 

For once my husband was in a Christmas spirit to put up the tree. Not that he is usually grumpy about it, but this year he was really having fun.







And there it is. The tree is a beauty. I still needed to put my tree skirt around the base, so that isn't quite done in this photo, but the lights and all the ornaments are on. 
It is fun to put up all the ornaments as they are items we have collected over the years, including some from trips, bits my daughter made when she was younger, and even a couple of ornaments I made at 5 years old.  It's a hodgepodge of memories that are always fun to see again. 

I'm hoping to put up my other decorations in the next few days also.  

It’s that time of the year.  Hope your weekend is going or has gone well! Thanks for stopping by!



Saturday, November 28, 2020

Not Impossible

Hi everyone. It's Saturday, and this morning I am heading out for a trail walk with my work lady friends. We have been meeting as a group  once a month for an outside dinner, but then covid got too out of control as well as the temperatures getting too cold to eat outside, so we decided a walk would be safest route to go.  There's 4 of us, and I haven't seen most of them since early October, so I am looking forward to doing some catching up and getting some calorie burning exercise after eating all that Thanksgiving pie. Smile.
 I know I owe some of you visits. It's on my agenda for later today. I'd hope to be more productive this morning, but time has gotten away from me. 
My daughter left last evening (Friday) after we spent yesterday chopping our tree and then even getting it put up. I'll show you some photos tomorrow.



As November starts to wind down, I thought a cheery bird page might be the right thing for today. 


 It is already day 28 of  Art Everyday Month
It took several steps made the pink part of the background. The toucan is a stamp and I dressed him up with some accessories. The flowers are punch outs from a Studio Light booklet, and the feathers are stamped and fussy cut. I also stamped the quote. I then cut around the edges of the page and attached it to some black watercolor paper. To finish it off, I added the white dots.
I am also lining up to Wendy's bird challenge at Art Journal Journey.

That's all for me today. Keeping this short since we are meeting at 9 AM to walk and I have a solid 45 minute drive to the trailhead. 
Have a great start to your weekend!


Friday, November 27, 2020

Black Friday


Hi everyone. 
It Black Friday here in the US. 
 Usually my husband and I would meander out about 7 or 8 AM, after the crazy shoppers who go out and wait in lines during the night have done their shopping. We liked to go see if we can find any remaining bargains since by that hour the stores have really cleared out. 
We are NOT going this year with Covid. however  There is no bargain so important to risk getting this disease ,but I will miss our day out shopping with my husband since we always had so much fun. 

The plan today we're going to go cut our Christmas tree before our daughter heads home, which she is doing later today.  That should be fun to do also.

Today I have a page for day 27 of Art Everyday Month and also for Wendy's bird challenge at  Art Journal Journey.

This is a page I started back in October with thoughts of Halloween. Since I never finished it, I changed it up a bit with some yellow spray ink, the bits of text paper, and some fall washi plant stickers. I also added a postage stamp I had, and I stamped the cancellation.

I decided to post it today because of the amount of black on the page and that it is Black Friday. OK, maybe not a great reason, but what the heck?

I think today we might go cut our Christmas tree while our daughter is home,  depending on how ambitious we end up feeling of course. This is a pre-post so I can let you know later. 

Happy start to your weekend, or if you have the long holiday one, enjoy!

Thanks for visiting.








 

Thursday, November 26, 2020

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving to all of you who celebrate today. And a very happy Thursday to those of you who don't.

Today is the 4th Wednesday of November and a day (in the US) to take stock of things and give thanks.

 I watched a show on the Pilgrims who celebrated the first Thanksgiving on PBS (The American Experience: Pilgrims) the other day.  

The Pilgrims chose to celebrate not because things were absolutely wonderful, but because they were the ones who had survived, been able to reap a harvest  and been able to keep the colony/settlement from falling apart.  They had lost around 50% of those who had settled with them only about a year earlier (lost to diseases, not enough food, and other causes).  I can't image having left so many of their group behind in Europe, and then sailing to a place which was not the one they had planned on but the one they ended up at. They didn't sail at the best time of year either, leaving England in the autumn and arriving in New England in early winter. Then they spent that winter watching so many they travelled with dying.  They robbed graves  (since many of the native Americans in that area had died from probably a smallpox outbreak not all that long before the Pilgrims arrived. This plague was brought over by European fishing fleets out in Georges Bank on the hunt for cod).  They put their dead/dying in sitting positions up against trees with guns to scare off  other Native American  communities that were not so friendly.  That must have been hard.  

So they celebrated what they did have.

 I found this show fascinating, and it put this year's Thanksgiving into a different perspective for me, especially with our current national and world situation with covid.

Just something to consider.

My art today  for Wendy's bird challenge at Art Journal Journey and also for day 26 of Leah's Art Everyday Month celebrates one of the stars of this American holiday, the turkey. Or in this case, the wild turkey.


 

Wild turkeys are definitely a success story. 
In New Hampshire not all that many years ago, there were no wild turkeys left . According the the Fish and Game webpage: Wild turkeys totally disappeared from New Hampshire 150 years ago because of habitat loss and the lack of a fish and game department to regulate hunting seasons. NH Fish and Game began transplanting wild turkeys into the state in in 1969-70 (this initial effort failed), then again in 1975. 

Now there are over 25,000 birds roaming my state. We have several rafters or flocks in my town, and it is not uncommon to come across them. I probably see them at least once a week either when I am out driving, out walking or sometimes  I even see them in my yard and underneath my bird feeders.
Here's a few photos taken in June of 2017 when one of the flocks  that live around me wandered through my yard with their little poults or babies.


You can see how little that baby is compared to the adult in this next photo. 



And from December of 2017.




Every time they visit my yard, the dogs bark if they are aware of them. (The dogs are in the house because the turkeys don't come up into the yard when the dogs are out.) That of course sends the turkeys back into the woods. They were here  just the other day, but because of barking dogs I didn't get any photos.  I just saw them walking away in between the trees.
I've thought about putting out corn for them, but unlike songbirds,  Fish and Game doesn't encourage the feeding of wildlife like flocks of turkeys. Probably smart, but it must be hard for turkeys to get enough food when the snow covers the ground.
There is turkey on my menu today , but not wild turkey as there are no hunters in my house.   And I am grateful I get to interact with these interesting birds, among other things too.

Hope you are are thankful for something today and that you also have a wonderful day!

Thanks for visiting!