Friday, February 17, 2012

Palettes and Pairings

Carla is one of the first women who decided to listen to my whining when I moved here from Hawaii one cold February, twelve years ago.  She listened, but didn't commiserate, but looked always for the bright side, the silver lining, always managing to help me see how God was at work in my life, even if I was grumpy about it.  Her husband, Jim, is my husband's uncle, and he employed Brandon as an electrician while Brandon and I were dating and for part of the time when we were married I think.  I remember always managing to show up to visit at dinner time, and Carla would welcome our little family of three to join in.  Carla and Jim are the ones who first showed Brandon what a real, down to earth follower of Christ lives like.  We love them and their family.  They've taught us so much.  

Carla, center, Josie, right, and cousin, left.
It was a happy day for me to get to join in on the celebration for Carla's birthday yesterday.  Her daughter, Josie, my dear sister-friend invited some of Carla's friends and some of her own to trek to Kirkland for a painting party!  I have to admit, I was pretty darn intimidated going to paint.  I've never been one to be able to blend colors in  paint.  I have to be able to smudge things with my in charcoal, pastels to be able to create something good.  Palettes and Pairings, the business that holds these painting classes, teaches you everything you need to know.  You go to their website, choose the painting you'd like to do, and enroll in a class.  There was a discount for the day we went, which was wonderful.  They have all the paints,  palettes, aprons and canvasses set for you, and there is coffee, tea, wine and snacks.  It makes for a wonderful girls' night out. 

Alas, I packed my camera bag and left it in my own van.  These pictures are taken with my cell phone.  

Here's the owner and instructor.  She painted right along with us, showing us what to do.

Voila!  I will turn this blank canvas into a MASTERPIECE!
My cell phone has a setting where it takes the photo in negative.  So cool!

more negative!

there's my painting.  I love spirals.

Leah, one of Josie's friends, is an actual artist,  She made this beautiful painting all on her own.

The next morning, Saraiah asked, "MOM, who made that beautiful painting with the waterfall and the sunshine????"    I didn't even see it as  She couldn't believe it was me.  When I told her it was, she of course wanted to try it for herself, and so did Levi.  They have turned our watercolors into mud, so I told them they had to use washable markers with water.  Their pictures are on the far left.  

A Gaggle of Geese

A friend of mine raises beautiful geese, ducks and chickens, selling the eggs on Ebay.  Her best geese are the Sebastopol geese, fetching quite a handsome sum for just one egg.  She asked me to come out and do some photos of her geese to show off their beauty in the online market.  It was time for some portraits of her children too and that was a blast.  They are some of the sweetest, most fun and most caring kids I've met.
This is their favorite frizzle chicken.  She comes and sits on their porch each evening, waiting to be put in safely in a kennel for the night.  
The kids enjoying themselves out in the field

I am clearly the king!
geese are loud, this sebastopol was no exception.  He looked like he could eat me!

he's so fluffy!

Sporting the coonskin cap!

Goodbye, Miss Frizzle!

Monday, February 13, 2012

Valentine's day cookies with Auntie Carol

My girls have so many aunties.  They are well loved!  My friend Carol has just two teenagers at home still and misses the younger kid times, so she's adopted them as Auntie Carol.  At Christmas time she and her daughter in law made Christmas goodies with the girls.  It was natural that at Valentine's Day, some cookies and whoopie pies would be in order, so she invited the girls over.  Of course I tagged along!

Carol was the one who sav ed me by taking care of Maia when I was teaching a photography class at the kids' co-op school.  She and Maia have a special bond.  One time, when Carol came to my house for a craft night, Maia couldn't get to sleep and was crying inconsolably.  Auntie Carol went to tuck her in and Maia exclaimed, "I love you!"  She slept just fine after that.  I'm so thankful for Carol, her big heart, and her friendship.

I couldn't believe I forgot my camera, which is usually strapped to my person, when it was time for the girls to make cookies!  Thankfully, Carol's husband had a Canon EOS Rebel XT, which I clumsily used in manual mode.  I never figured out how to change the aperture, so all I adjusted for these pictures was the ISO and shutter speed.  It was a great challenge, and made me learn how Canon cameras work.

Maia is very careful

Putting sprinkles on the whoopie pies


I make a HEDGE around my cookie!

Frosting snack! 

See you soon!