Tuesday, June 22, 2021

Time for Summer

 Hi again everyone. Let me start off by wishing everyone a Happy summer or Happy winter (depending on your location) since the solstice has just passed a couple of days ago.

Today we start a new challenge at Try It on Tuesday.   As it was the summer solstice for those of us in the Northern Hemisphere this past Sunday, our challenge theme is Here Comes Summer.

I used a Gelli printed background as the base of my page. I added some background stamping, as well as some washi tape, a couple of stamped images from an old beach themed set from Oxford Impressions, some stamped quotes, and a stamped and colored sun. 

I picked an ocean theme because for  many summer means a trip or several trips to the beach. Or maybe even a summer vacation/holiday stay.

We accept all types of art at Try It on Tuesday , and you have the next 2 weeks to join us. If you're looking for some great ideas, check out all the pieces from the other members of the design team too. They are some really creative ladies.

Thanks also to those of you who joined our masculine challenge also.

I'm looking forward to seeing what summer means to everyone.

I just saw on Mia's blog the Craftlandia challenge is the sea, so I am also going to link my page up there also.

Thanks for stopping by my blog. 

Monday, June 21, 2021

T Stands for Strawberries

 Hi everyone. 

The weeks go by so fast. Hope everyone has had a nice past week. 

Happy T Day again.  Stop over at Bleubeard and Elizabeth's blog and share your drink related post, as well as whatever else you want to share.

I didn't realize that strawberries were  ready to pick strawberries here in New Hampshire until I was driving down the road a couple of weeks ago and saw some for sale on the side of the road. June definitely means strawberries in my area.

Even though last week was a busy week for me, I knew I had to squeeze in some strawberry picking because the season doesn't last that long.

While  my daughter was home visiting,  I suggested we should go pick some strawberries at a local farm first thing the morning. She rolled her eyes at me, but she did get up to go. In the car she told me that she was only going because I told her she had to. 
Knowing my daughter, she isn't always quickly receptive to new things. I think in her mind picking strawberries reminded her of being dragged out by me to go picking when she was a kid.

At the farm I grabbed a big box container for my pickings, and she took a quart container as you can see in the above photo.

The picking was really excellent, even though I seemed to photograph more unripe ones than red juicy ones in this above picture.  My daughter  filled her quart container about 4 times and then dumped them into my box. It didn't take long before she was into strawberry picking. She even told me she can see why I wanted to go. She said it was addicting, and they tasted so good.

I thought to myself that's the difference between being 29 and 9, but I certainly wasn't going to say that to her.

It's a lot more fun to pick with someone who is enjoying themselves than someone who is only going because you dragged them there. Smile.

The farm even makes their own homemade cider donuts. We could smell them in the parking lot and around the barn where you pay.  You could buy a bag of either 2, 4 or 6 donuts, and I got a bag of 6 to bring home so each of us (my daughter, husband and myself) could each have a couple. They were bigger than I thought they would be, still warm when we got home, and were very tasty. One would have been enough, but they were only going to be warm and fresh for a short time. 

The donuts were a nice way to finish off what turned out to be a really good morning. Even for my daughter.

I also did a bit of making with my strawberries. I forgot to take pictures of my strawberry cake, but here's the photo from Once Upon a Chef blog where I got my recipe. (You can click on the link for it if you are interested in the recipe.)

This cake was very delicious with some whipped cream and really easy to make. I've added this recipe to my remake pile because I think it would taste great with other fruit too.

I also made some strawberry jam/sauce.

I call it jam/sauce as I don't like really thick jams, and this one is good as a jam but also good as a slightly thicker sauce on ice cream, waffles or whatever else you'd chose to put it on. Plus I left in chunks of strawberries.

And I have 2 drinks for T this week. 
My first drink was from the farm where we picked our strawberries. They also make their own hard cider, and for strawberry season they made a strawberry and apple red cider. I liked the idea of strawberry cider and decided to try a half growler.

(If you're wondering about the water in the background, that's because the hubby and I had it while we were out on the boat.)

We used our boat cups (washable plastic so they don't break) to drink out cider from, and they really show the red cider against the white inside of the cup.

I really liked this cider as it wasn't sweet. I don't really like sweet cider.

My second photo was a hard seltzer my niece gave me to try at my mother-in-laws one afternoon when we were both there.  It was a really tasty hard seltzer with just the right amount of strawberry to make it not too sweet.

Hope every has a wonderful T day and week ahead. Thanks for visiting my blog.

Saturday, June 19, 2021

The Birds and Bees

Hi everyone. I wasn't planning a post today, but for some reason I am very lazy this morning . I slept late and downloaded a bunch of photos I took yesterday. I played around with some photo editing, had my breakfast, and I really need to go do a bit of gardening. If I can get motivated that is.

Procrastination is not always a bad thing.

So yesterday I had a lot of natural encounters. It started when it was time to open up the beehive and see what is actually going on inside. The bees have been here for just over 2 weeks, and something should be going on. I hadn't opened the hive in  a week so it was time to do a check.

I really need to meet up with an experience beekeeper to tell me if all is going as it should right now. I could see comb being built (and you can see it in these photos), but being a newbie, I am having a hard time telling if it is for honey or brood. I did do some more research using my photos, which is one reason why I took them. I want to know better what I need to look for next trip in. 

 However, when I was holding the frames I removed, I could not also snap a photo, and since I was home alone, I could only take photos once I put the frames back into the hive. Next time I check them (in probably around a week) I will have to look if I see signs of covered combs or any eggs. And maybe see if I can get the hubby to come take photos.

With all these bees I failed to find the queen. I really messed up. I should have marked her with a pebeo paint pen (they actually recommend this pen, which I happen to have a few) when she was in her box.

Then yesterday afternoon I met the hubby, and we went out for a boat ride. He gets out early on Fridays between Memorial Day (late May) and Labor Day (early September), and since there are fewer boats out on Friday afternoon than on the weekends, it makes boating much nicer.

Later in the afternoon we anchored in between some islands. It just so happened there were lots of fascinating birds this time.

Starting with the Canada Geese that swam in.

(Google flipped my photos around.)

Pete found them very interesting.

There was also some terns (these are a favorite of mine), a common eider, and a heron.

I am guessing this poor Eider doesn't have a mate as I also saw him on our first trip out (or I think it was him) alone.

But the star of the bird show was this guy or girl.

These bald eagles nest in these islands, so we see them around now and again. This one was just posing for so many people who boated, paddle boarded or kayaked by. It's hard to get clear photos from a boat that slightly rocks, so I am happy to have gotten these.

I guess it is time to get myself moving. Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!

Friday, June 18, 2021

Fluttering Around

Happy Friday everyone. This week went by faster than last week. I am loving June, but I bet July will be here in a snap if time doesn't slow down just a little bit.

Yesterday I went to my first social event since being vaccinated and since the whole world changed with covid.  My former department at school was having an end of the school year party at in the garden of one of my friend's houses, and I was invited to join. It was great to see people. I hadn't realized how much I missed chatting with everyone.  It was fun hearing gossip but not having to deal with those issues also.  

My page today is one from my garden journal. The inspiration for it began when I noticed one of my chemical structure overhead transparencies (that I brought home from school rather than tossing into the trash when I cleaned out my room last year) looked a lot like a flower. I cut it out and painted/doodled the stem.  I also added some black paint dots to the center of the flower for details. I should also say I sprayed the background with 2 shades of blue, before the stem was painted but after the flower was added. As the flower is made of acetate, it was very easy to wipe off the spray, and I liked keeping the background white, because I have yet to see a 100% transparent flower.

I decided to keep it simple. The butterflies and dragonflies are punch out from an Art by Marlene booklet.  I added some label maker tape (from TH) and a stamped butterfly image that I colored. On top of that I added a mini button of a butterfly.

Finally I used one of those ancient stamps in my collection and added the quote. 

That's all for me today. I'm keeping it short.

Hope everyone has a great weekend!


Thursday, June 17, 2021

Just Bee You

 Happy Thursday everyone. 

Today I want to share a tag for the newest challenge at Tag Tuesday. This time Wendy is hosting and her theme is tag on tag.

I like this idea as it is a nice mental challenge to figure out how to do this.

Since my bee stamps were out I decided to make a bee themed tag.  I inked my big/main tag in yellow and then used some light brown ink to stamp the honeycomb.  I also stamped the big bees in black and the "Just Bee You" quote in brown.

The smaller tag is actually one that came off of a T shirt I  had bought and had saved  for awhile. It was just the right size for this layout. I inked the store tag blue and stamped the honey bee image on some white paper for the middle. Then I fussy cut out the honey bee image and added it onto the mini blue tag. I doodled the edge design on the mini tag to match the edge design on the honey bee image. Back on the main tag, I colored the big bees, used some glitter glue on their wings, outlined the edge with a black pen, and finished it off by stamping the quote. 

There you have it. 

My bees are doing well and staying busy in and out of the hive. Many of them have discovered one of my Spirea bushes. There were so many bees on it that the bush was actually buzzing.

And since bees love beautiful days, how about some pretty clouds on a blue sky?

I see a big old sea turtle swimming the across the sky, a giant peony flower and the head of an alligator with some really BIG teeth.

Hope your week is going well!

Wednesday, June 16, 2021

Butterfly Anatomy

 Hi everyone. 

Today I have another butterfly page for Mia's challenge at Art Journal Journey

I thought I'd tap into my biologist background and make an artistic version of the structure of a butterfly wing.  Although I used the correct names of parts, this diagram should not be used for any actual identification. This is especially true since I just doodled a butterfly, and this is not a real species.

I drew the half of a butterfly in my Garden Journal.  I used markers and paint to color it in, and I used ink to color the background. I labeled the parts with a Sharpie. I spelled out the taxonomic order that butterflies and  moths belong to, Lepidoptera,  using some stickers.  Using that Latin name, you  can call someone  someone who studies butterflies  a lepidopterist. 

I also added the complete gold paper butterfly just because I thought it looked good there.

And perhaps you'd like to see a little more from Fuller Rose Gardens that I shared with you yesterday for T.

These were all taken in the Japanese Garden part of the estate. Too bad no butterflies were flitting about. It was a small area, but very beautiful.

Hope you are having, or have, a wonderful day.