Monday, January 30, 2006


It feels good to feel motivated to do things again! It is still raining, windy and cold -- will these Pacific storms *never* end??! -- but I can tell the days are getting longer. Just a little bit. I wonder if I could just go to bed at the end of November and wake up in February. It would save a lot of time and moping around!

On Saturday, Lydia and I went to see the Silverton dance team compete in Tualatin. One of the older girls was sick, so Alice got her chance as an alternate to do her thing and dance with the rest of the team. I know I'm only her mom, but I think she was terrific! The team took first place in their division. A good omen for State, you think?

Now this is what I've been playing with lately. I *would* say "working on", but I get less frustrated with my big clumsy fingers and their inability to do exactly what I want them if I think of it as play...

This is my January project for my Yahoo! group Playing With Clay Sculpt Along. I am so glad they let me in to play!

Look how deep those eye sockets are on this rough sculpt! Don't you think that they OUGHT to be deep enough to set in some eyes? But no, I had to add quite a bit of clay to the brow to get the eyes to set far enough back into the skull. Lesson learned #1: make those eye sockets REALLY REALLY DEEP!

Now she's looking pretty good, seeing as how I am such a beginner. (I will NOT expect perfection... I will NOT expect perfection... Yet!)

She is slightly cross-eyed because the inner corner of her left eye is set in deeper than the right. They actually ARE in straight. The discrepancy is much more noticeable in the photograph than it is in real life.

I am absolutely delighted with her ears!

Here she is with her hair is in place. I used wefted mohair in an auburn brown -- I wish MY hair was that color! Lesson learned #2: paint the scalp the color of the hair so if it shows through it won't be so noticeable. I had to use too much hair to cover her head enough. Alas for those cute cute ears!

See the beadwork around the base of her stand? That will be her collar. I am trying to decide if I should underline it with some fine silk. We will just have to see when the collar is done. I think the beads just might be enough. Heaven knows, it ought to be enough -- I don't make jewelry this elaborate to wear for myself!

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Help... (she whimpered...)

This is why I am blogging today:

I will NOT despair, but... I can't FIND anything. This chaos is messing with my head, as if the fog outside is filtering through my eyeballs into my brain. Sigh.

There is only one thing to do, and that is to put on some music -- Seal, perhaps? -- and start putting things AWAY.

I really REALLY wish I could work "tidy" instead of flinging out piles of stuff, but it just isn't any FUN that way!

Sunday, January 08, 2006

I have just enough time tonight to post the photo of the finished "Girly-Girl" socks. Lydia says she loves them, which is all the payment I need for a labor of love like these.

Let's see... they took me through "The 10 Commandments", "The Great Escape", "You Can't Take It With You", and a bunch of the extra stuff on "The Lord of the Rings". (Are you getting a feel for my taste in movies?)

A pretty good project, AND finished!

Friday, January 06, 2006

No whining... but, oh! I am tired. I spent all (yes, really, ALL) day working on year end payroll. It is a good thing in the end that my ability to pay attention to detail makes me such a good bookkeeper. It is a job that absolutely must be done, and I can do it. I do it well too... but truly... my soul is not happy.

My brand new washing machine is not working. This is not a good thing on a dairy farm.

I did get a little time this evening to finish a bracelet I've been working on for a friend's daughter's Sweet 16 party tomorrow night. I absolutely love designing jewelry, though my style usually runs to something a little more outrageous than this.

I like it, though I probably wouldn't wear it myself. Alice likes it, and actually seems a little miffed that I'm giving it away. She's a tough customer to please, and at 14 1/2, she is close enough in age to give me a good barometer as to whether or not the Sweet 16 will like it. I probably should just have broken down and given her cash or a gift certificate like everyone else, but I just can't. I *need* to give more thought to the gifts I give than that.

I have received enough bath baskets and cheese logs in my life to remind me why, too!

Sunday, January 01, 2006

Happy New Year!

For my first post of the new year, I want to thank everyone who drops by to see what I am up to and wish you wonderful things for 2006. My family loves me as much or more than I deserve and are always supportive of my endeavors, but I always have a sneaking suspicion that it's only because they find me amusing... Anyway, all you kindred spirits out there, thanks for letting me know that I am not too totally weird!

Isn't this little ice fairy just the cutest thing!?! She was made just for me by Peggy Elliot aka "Raven" on the Fantasy Fins & Fairys list for a Christmas ornament swap. She is from a pattern by Leta Benedict and is only about 6" tall. Her face is exquisite, and yes, her hair really is that shiney. The ball in her hand is actually clear glass -- I have to find me some of those -- and her "flesh" is white satin that has been embellished with paint for texture.

I joined that list to learn more about sculpting with polymer clays and sent a Sculpey unicorn decorated with Christmas greenery made in the style of Christi Friesen.

I have never had the discipline to make a true white-on-white doll, though I have begun more than once. I always end up introducing color. I am going to have to give it another go one of these days.

And then we continue with the sock knitting. This is the "Girly Girl" sock from Interweave Press' "Socks" book. The original was done with handspun, but I am doing this one with Lorna's Laces sock yarn (colorway "Somerset"). My gauge is the tiniest bit smaller than called for, so this will be a slim sock. I didn't want to use a larger needle, as the knit fabric in the sole is a little more open than I like for socks to begin with.

I have another batch of the Lorna's Laces to work up yet -- I will make sure to find a pattern with more stitches in the round and use a smaller needle. It's too bad, because I absolutely love this lace design. Very simple and satisfying to knit.

Tomorrow is the girls' last day of Christmas break, and then I can have my own routine back and start on my 3D projects again. I have a naked doll sitting on the shelf who has finally decided on a persona and wardrobe for herself. (Judi Ward's "Whatever Whatever" pattern done in the zaftig variation.) This lady is one of my best and I am looking forward to getting her dressed.