well, i'm not sure that i did this challenge right for the three muses, the theme is "odd bird," maybe i should have taken it more literally. oh well. my bird is not odd at all, i like to think it's the girl in the painting who is a bit odd/strange. i wasn't going to submit it, but here it is.
this piece was inspired by my daughter Amelia, she has a favorite little baby which she calls "baby" and a favorite teddy bear she calls "bear." (pretty original!) sometimes she only has the baby, sometimes only the bear, and then there are times when she has to have both and on a very rare occasion she won't have either. she loves to have all sorts of stuffed animals in bed with her, but these two are her favorite. amelia's bear is actually a christmas bear with a santa hat and jacket on, but i didn't think that would look quite right! i thought this piece worked well for this weeks theme at Mixed Media Monday, a few of my (amelia's) favorite things.
for me, i think my all time favorite summer sound is the chirp of crickets! i absolutely love falling asleep to the chirping sounds of crickets. they have just started to chirp a little bit here, but in the next week or two it will be a full chorus of crickets! pure bliss! up until the last week or so, we've been able to listen to tree frogs at night, which i also love to listen to, but now it's time to hear the crickets. their chirps will go into early fall when we start to get our first frosts.
right behind listening to crickets, is the sound of thunder. i love to hear thunder. when we lived out in Idaho, we didn't get the big thunderstorms like we do in Wisconsin and boy did i miss all of that rumbling. this summer we've definitely had way too much rain, but this means we've also had a lot of thunder. my favorite are the nights when mild thunderstorms just roll through all night long along, rumble, rumble!
bird songs are always a favorite, there is always some sort of chattering going on. whether its the robins singing a wonderful rain song when rain is on the way or the squawking blue jays and crows outside our bedroom window in the morning.
how about sounds that may not be very pleasant to the ears, but they still remind you of summer and because of this, the sound holds a special meaning? one such sound is lawn mowers. it's definitely not my favorite noise, some days it's almost a constant noise here in town, but when i hear it, i think of summer, and then that makes me think of summers as a kid, laying in the grass at my parents house, and those long gone carefree days of no worries.
in the last week or so, the cicadas have started their summer buzzing sounds. it's amazing how loud they are! it's not a very pretty noise, but to me it is one of the sounds of summer here in Wisconsin. i love it!
today i tried my hand at making pasta again. last fall i tried to make homemade butternut squash ravioli and i wasn't able to roll the dough out thin enough and they were little dough bombs that just sat in your stomach. what a disappointment.
my husband no longer has his jaw wired shut so now i can start making real meals again. i had a little helper to roll and cut the dough, so it wasn't the prettiest pasta, but boy did it taste good.
i made a large batch of pesto with fresh basil from our garden. i used some for the pasta and then froze the rest in ice cube trays which then i will put in ziplock bags to freeze for the winter. it is such a winter treat to have pesto from our garden!
whenever i have pasta i always feel the need to have fresh bread with it. i usually use the bread recipe from Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day by Jeff Hertzberg and Zoe Francois. it's great because you make a large batch of dough, let it rise and then you put it in the refrigerator, then when you want fresh bread, (it also makes great pizza dough), you just cut off a large chunk, let it rise, bake and you have fresh bread. there's all sorts of things you can make with the dough but regular bread and pizza are my favorite.
our meal was probably a bit carb heavy but very delicious, we had all sorts of yummy veggies from the farmer's market and our garden in the pasta, so that helps balance it out, right? the kids ate theirs right up, so i'll count that as success. i think there will be more pasta making in the future.
here's a little painting i did this weekend in between canning 21 quarts of green beans! i'm not sure why, but i ordered 2 bushels of green beans from the Amish, one would have been plenty. now we have over 35 quarts of beans, with more in the freezer and some out on the vine in our garden. i think people will be getting canned beans for Christmas this year!
this little painting was inspired by all the sunflowers that are starting to bloom in my garden. i just love sunflowers. they're such a happy and cheerful flower with their bright blooms standing tall over everything.
for me, they can brighten just about any day.
here's a painting i did yesterday. i had no plan, which is unusual for me, i just started to paint, and this is what happened. i had fun doing it, but i'm not sure if i like it or not, i'm on the fence with this one. it might be the colors or maybe because it wasn't planned. i saw this blank board and for some reason i just felt like painting the background teal, teal is one of my least favorite colors and then i added dark purple, another color that i don't use very often, but then i added some of my favorites to use. maybe i did this to help balance it all out? even if i'm not sure about the painting, i do like the little lace wings on the hummingbirds!
i thought this piece that i finished yesterday would work for Mixed Media Monday, the theme this week is "something blue." it seems a lot of my pieces lately have blue in them, i'm especially loving the turquoise blue. this piece i was inspired by my kids and a summertime favorite of theirs, bubble blowing. they especially like it when i blow the bubbles and they can chase and pop them.
it seems when my creativity starts to lag, that i start drawing little girls again. sometimes this works, sometimes it doesn't. this time it worked, yeahhh! so here is the first, with a few more yet to come. i hope everyone has a beautiful weekend!
i think my creativity has flown out the window! (or perhaps gone down the gutter with all the rain we've been having.) things were going well before yesterday, i had so many ideas i had to write them all down. it all started yesterday with a painting that i just couldn't get to work, so i moved on to another which i finished today that i definitely don't like, which then i started working on a third and it's just not happening for me right now. even my photos i took didn't turn out. (this lily is from last week when things were flowing)
is it the moon? hormones? all this rain? i keep trying to force it by trying to come up with ideas, but this is really only making me more frustrated. i went back to my idea list but now they all feel so dull compared to a few days ago when they were filled with so many possibilities. this isn't anything new for me, my creativity goes in phases. to make it worse, i really feel like painting and drawing, but my brain feels as if it doesn't know what being creative means. arghh! my mother-in-law likes to say, "it is what it is." i guess this means i just have to accept it and wait it out, it too will pass.
here's background #2. i'm not sure if i'm finished yet, i have that something is missing feeling, or something isn't quite right. i'm going to sleep on it and see how it looks in the morning. isn't sleep amazing that way, i love it.
here's the first painting from the backgrounds that i did the other day. there's definitely some summer influence here! we're heading up north for the weekend to my sister-n-laws for some fun in the sun.
hope everyone has an enjoyable and safe weekend! happy 4th of July!
last fall when i harvested my onions, i must of forgotten a few. this spring when the snow melted, there were onions growing. i decided to leave them in the ground to see what happens, (i'm a new gardener so i'm always learning.) the onion stalks are around 4 feet tall and have now started blooming. they are very striking in the garden. from the distance they look like giant white balls, but when you look close, they are covered in small beautiful flowers. i don't think i can eat the onions after this, but if i think i can harvest the seeds after the flowers dry out.