"You know, he was always like a fish out of water around her...poor Lumpers, never mind, I says, plenty more fish in the sea, plenty more."

Saturday, April 30, 2011

More nature letters

A, C, E, F, G, H, I, K, L, O,P, R, T, U, V, W, X, Y are the letters I've found so far with my camera. Hmmm, what phrase can I make with my super Scrabble senses?

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Mini Me

Over the Easter holidays, I sat down and began making a body for the painted doll's head I made a few weeks ago for my profile shot, the one you see in the right bar. This here is a leg. I found this brown cotton print that is covered in flowers. I liked the colour ( which is really close to my skin tone) and the idea that the doll's body would appear to be covered in floral tattoos.

Two legs, two arms and one torso, ready to be sewn up together.

Finally, attach the head, and that's Me, done. In a few days, I'll make some clothes for Mini me. In the meantime, I'll just hang out in my floral birthday suit.

Friday, April 22, 2011

How to Make Lithuanian Easter Eggs

What you need:

1) a Lithuanian with expertise,

2) a thingamajig,

3) beeswax,
4) prepared dyes - these were made from boiled red cabbage(blue), onion skins (brown) and lake (red),
5) a hot plate for keeping the wax melted, and
6) eggs (hardboiled),

7) some fine motor skills.

Create designs using nail head dipped in wax. Then when the design is finished, soak the egg in dye bath for about two hours. Towel dry the eggs and then using a fingernail or a paring knife, scrape off the wax. The eggs can then be rubbed with some vegetable oil to give it a sheen or left matte.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

From my sketch book

"Quicksand!" panicked George before he went floundering in the shallow water. Luckily, I had brought a change of clothes. Unfortunately, they were in the trunk of the car, at the top of the stairs, some 473 steps way above us.
In front of the museum was a table set up with a glass container filled with water insects around which clustered a group of twenty kids. This did not include George and Paul. The leader then explained that they would be passing out little nets for hunting insects in the pond nearby. Unfortunately, she had only 12 nets, and these were snatched up fast by 12 kids. This did not include George and Paul.
When we got back home, we played a game of sardines, but it wasn't much fun with only the three of us. Finally at 4 o'clock, I let them play Wii. And the day was salvaged.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Sorry, kiddo.

Should have is the modal auxiliary past form that is used when regretting or speculating about past actions, and is one of the most regrettable usages in the English language. It’s worse than four-letter words because should have has the power to make one feel guiltier, sadder, sorrier, more regretful, and more frustrated and more ashamed than is necessary. Should have can lead to depression. Should alone is okay. Should is handy to teach, inform and reassure, like "you should eat breakfast, because it’s your fuel to start the day." Or, "I should be home by 7 tonight." But should have? "See, you should have eaten breakfast, then you might have passed your math test!" :-C

The thing is, my parenting started out with should, but along the way, it turned into should have, which doesn’t help my son at all. It’s just me commentating and making him feel like a failure. So, today is the first day of Change For The Better. And instead of saying I should have kept my mouth shut, I will stick with the simple future tense and say, “I will shut up and I will trust the boy to learn from his mistakes.”

Thursday, April 14, 2011

I Love My Cat

When children are playing alone on the green,

In comes the playmate that never was seen.

When children are happy and lonely and good,

The Friend of the Children comes out of the wood.

(R.L. Stevenson)

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

The Boy

My boy is 8, and he’s already starting to play mind-games with himself, where he’ll sometimes cheer for an outcome that he really doesn’t want. For example, if he’s playing a soccer match, he’ll say, “ I hope our team loses.” It’s just a coping strategy, I know, for taking the edge off any potential disappointments. It’s a slippery slope, that one. He runs the risk of becoming perverse, and if he gets really good at these mind games, he might end up confusing himself and accepting or even going after the wrong things. I know because I’ve done it myself.

Honey, it’s best to know yourself, believe in yourself and follow your heart. Be honest with yourself, always. And whenever you get knocked down, learn what you can, get back up, and keep going after the things that are really important to you.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

1. Eloise Trigg (b2005) Mermaid with juice box, 2010

In her search for meaningful context beyond that offered by contemporary abstract realism, Eloise Trigg has traveled to the West Coast and Quebec, looked at primitive cultures, surrealism, Picasso archetypes, and she has freshly created a kind of joyful new form of animalism. Yet, by allowing her forms and effects to evolve, as in process-oriented modernism, from medium and the act of working with it, Trigg has also succeeded in producing an art ripe with a sense of now - a certain complex, technological now, that is. Longing for renewed contact with a primal instinct, Trigg uses colour to establish the ubiqitous inner conflict of nature vs nurture and leaves viewers breathless with her tongue-in-cheek reveries.

Says Wendy Tsao of Child's Own Studio," I just love working with Eloise Trigg - she has an insight beyond her years and an energy I envy madly."

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Laure's softie

I made a deal with Laure: help me with my website redesign and I'll make you a couple of softies.

So she did. And she made it the way I wanted: nothing fancy, just clean and to the point. She was a reliable designer, always available, ready to tweak and offer insightful comments, and she regularly checked in on me. So, when it was my turn, to make her softie, she gave me a drawing she did when she was four.
"What is it?" I asked.
"I actually don't remember," she said,"...maybe a hedgehog?"
"And what's that thing on its nose?"
"I don't know," she laughed, "you decide."
I worked on it, happily, because it was a happy creature. And because I had come to know and like Laure, I made the thing on its nose a friendship bracelet. And when I gave it to Laure, she was happy too...

Friday, April 8, 2011

More ATCs

Had another bout of the Artist Trading Card Syndrome and came up with these.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011


Have you ever heard of a kinesin motor protein? Well, I didn't know what it was when I received an e-mail from Mr. Maloney, a PhD student from the University of New Mexico, working in a lab in the Astronomy and Physics department. He sent me a drawing of a cartoon character he and colleagues made of this cellular enzyme. Apparently, a kinesin motor protein has...uh...feet-like extensions that fit into grooves along the microtubule path and are responsible for the movement of chromosomes during mitosis. (got that?)

So, this kinesin motor protein, named Kiney, wore green Converse runners and a gold chain necklace and carried a boom box - yo, he was some bad cruisin' rap dude!

They sent me some photos of Kiney at the lab - He looks like he's happy working there. see Kiney at lab

If you would like to learn more about motor proteins, you can go here and learn all about them.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Mini collage work

ATCs or Artist Trading Cards are miniature works of art the size of baseball/hockey trading cards (2 1/2" x 3 1/2" or 63mm x 89mm). They can be produced in any medium and are usually traded or exchanged, rather than sold. They can be stored in standard card collector pocket sleeves or sheets (sure beats having to find places to hang or store large canvases!). The ATC movement was started by a guy named Stirnemann from Zurich, Switzerland, and today, you can find ATC exhibits and trading sessions throughout the world and on-line.

There was a short, intense period where I whipped up some small ATC-inspired canvases, using photos of my friends' kids. Then, for whatever reason, I stopped, tidied away the glue and paper and moved on to other things.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Space Boy

So, my latest Child's Own project was sent from a lady in Alberta, Canada. It was an astronaut drawing by her nephew. I learned that you CAN make a decent helmet from crafter's felt (just use pattern to make a ball, then cut out opening for face).

I also came across Roberta Bondar, first female Canadian astronaut in space /environmentalist/physician and scientist/photographer and author/oh..just superwoman extraordinaire. I thought about her while I sewed together the astronaut. Teachers could just use Ms. Bondar as a teaching aid for health and career education; they could cover so many possibilities!

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Mmmmm muffins!

Did I say "no recipes"? Well, I've changed my mind. These blueberry muffins are sooo easy and fast to make, it's almost like you waved a wand, man.

Stir together in a bowl:
2 cups flour
3 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 cup sugar

In another small bowl, beat with fork:
1 egg
1 cup milk
1/4 cup vegetable oil

Fold wet ingredients into flour mixture, add 1 cup frozen or fresh blueberries. Fill muffin tins. Bake at 400 F for 20 min.

Makes 8 large or 12 small muffins.

Told you so. Easy.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Is your kid into Pokemon cards?


(this card by me)

I found this neat site where you can make your own Pokemon cards. It's in a template format, quite easy to do and my son made one in about ten minutes. You can either introduce your child to this site or make a card yourself as a surprise for him or her. Just print it out and paste onto an old Pokemon card or cardstock. Some understanding of Pokemon cards required.

(this one by The Boy)