Monday, November 30, 2009

Pumpkin Pie


I didn't manage to get the pumpkin pie made on Thanksgiving, but I did bake one yesterday.  This is my husband's favorite dessert (well, second only to coconut custard pie), and I cut leaves out of the dough for the top.  I thought it came out pretty cute, but next time I won't coat the leaves in cinnamon, since they ended up looking a little burnt (though I assure you they weren't).

Saturday, November 28, 2009

ETSY PLUG: lindylou

Do you want to freshen up a room quickly?  Throw pillows are an easy way to do that, and LindyLou makes quality covers in a wide variety of fabrics. 

Her envelope design makes it easy to switch them out or to take them off for washing. I've had mine for a while now, and I've washed it several times and it has held its shape perfectly.


I think the way lindylou plays with fabric combinations makes for some very pretty creations, like "Morning Glory Mix."


There is a great variety of patterns and colors at lindylou, but you can contact her for a custom creation if you would like something you can't find.  And if you are trying to match colors, you can ask for a swatch before you order.


In addition to all the great pillow covers for your home, lindylou offers cute travel pillowcases that fit mini airplane pillows.  Wouldn't these make great gifts for those frequently on the go?

I also think any of the pillow covers at lindylou would make great gifts for your girls off at college. They'd be a great way to personalize a room a make it feel a bit more homey.
 
You may find home decor too personal to give, but you can always add things from other sites (like Etsy) that you'd like to receive to your Amazon Wishlist with their "Universal" button.  If you have a Wishlist already, you can find this button to the left of the screen when you are looking at your list and add it to your toolbar. 

IMAGES: LINDYLOU2

Friday, November 27, 2009

Thankful For: Literacy


I hope you all had a delighful Thanksgiving. 

Our weekend plans are to finish a shed we started building last weekend, and fill it with all the yard implements to free up a little more space in Brian's garage/workshop.  It will be nice not to have to roll the lawn mower over the gravel driveway, up the back steps, through the gate, and into the backyard next year when I use it. 

The weather today is wonderful, but by the end of the weekend we may get some snow, and if we do, I hope to curl up in front of the fireplace with a good book.  We like books around here, as you might can tell.  We had them stacked up on the front porch for a while before we got the bookshelves up.  Happy found herself lost in the maze of them one time, as you can see in the photo above.  I can't say what it is exactly that we love about books so much, but both Brian and I have loved to read, from an early age, and continue to do so every day.  I am thankful that we grew up in a country where literacy is rampant, and where we are free to read what we like.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Huge Giveaway on The RikRak Studio



I wanted to share a great opportunity with you all today.  K over at The RikRak Studio has compiled one heck of an assortment of handmade goodies from more than 30 shops that she is giving away to one lucky reader.  There are lots of ways to win, so head on over to read all about it.  You might even win a print from me (it seems to be in mail system purgatory, but I am hopeful that it will arrive at K's just in time to congregate with all these other great goodies before being sent to the lucky winner).  Good luck and Happy Thanksgiving!

*** Yea!  My "Skeleton Leaf" photograph arrived safe and sound in Canada and is part of the prize pack!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Thankful For: Green


Yesterday I posted about how I was thankful to have experienced living in Wyoming.  Well, living in Wyoming has also made me thankful for something else, entirely.  I confess this isn't the lushest state, and now when I travel or read or watch t.v. and see somewhere very green, my senses just devour it.  The overwhelming green we experienced earlier this year in Virginia (where this was taken) is not something  I haven't seen before.  I spent the first 22 years of my life in South Carolina, where the interstates are lined for miles with thick forests of towering pine trees.  But living in a state where I don't see that every day has made it seem so rich to me, which is a sensation I never felt when I actually lived in it.  Living here has made me really appreciate greenness like I never have before.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Thankful For: Wyoming


It took me a while, but I do appreciate Wyoming.  I had to get used to the sparse population, the vast distances between places, and the subtle touches of color.  But now when I leave to visit other places, they strike me as too crowded, too busy, too developed.  I feel like I can think out here, clearly, without so many distractions.  The days are quieter.  The air tastes cleaner.  Wyoming isn't the perfect place for me (it's far away from my loved ones, and it could benefit from a coast), but it's a great place to be right now.  And isn't right now all that really matters?

Monday, November 23, 2009

Thankful For: My Eyes


Of course I'm thankful for my legs so that I can walk, and my thumbs so that I can grasp things and my tastebuds so that I can savor food, but the only parts of my body that I actually worry about losing are my eyes.  I am so thankful for sight, and I try to honor that not only with my photography, but by simply taking the time to see everything that surrounds me.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

ETSY PLUG - Simply Bitten


I thought since "New Moon" opened this weekend, today's Etsy Plug would feature a Twilight swag seller.  Simply Bitten offers funny and sweet decals and other goodies for the Twilight-obsessed.  My favorite is the "Be safe" sticker, in Edward's script. 

Friday, November 20, 2009

Thankful For: Quiet Time


I am always thankful for quiet time to relax and think.  All the better if it's outside on a beautiful day.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Thankful For: Sunny Days


My heart sings when the sun is out in full force, filtered through spring green leaves.  I remember before I took this in my backyard, closing my eyes and feeling the warmth on my skin and thinking the moment was perfect and whole.  Then I realized I wanted to remember it, so I grabbed my camera.  I feel warm and sunny just looking at this photo, remembering.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Thankful For: Family and Friends


This first post in my "Thankful For" series almost goes without saying, but even so, I will still say it. 

I'm thankful for my family and friends.  My wonderful husband has given me the opportunity to focus on my art and that makes every day a great day.  I can't think of a better gift he could give me.  I am thankful for my sweet doggies, Little Bear and Happy.  They are the best company I could have during the day, and like any good pet, their unconditional love reminds me how I should love.

I have wonderful parents who raised me to be the person I am, and for that I am thankful.  I wish I could be with them more often, but I treasure the time we do spend together.  I have two great sisters and a great brother who encourage me and their families are a wonderful additon to mine.  I am thankful for my grandfather, who is an amazing example of what a kind, patient person I too can be, when I try.  I am also thankful for my wonderful inlaws, who have treated me like one of their own.  And to my extended family - you are too numerous to name - I have enjoyed meeting each and every one of you.

I am also grateful for the myriad of friends I have, scattered around the country.  Even if we don't talk very often, I think of you often, and of the wonderful times we have had together.  Each of you shaped some facet of me for the better, and I thank you for that.

And you, my dear bloggity readers, I am thankful for you, too.  I enjoy coming out of my morning fog each day by posting for you and reading your helpful and kind comments.  It means a lot to me that you take a few minutes from your lives to read about mine, and to enjoy (I hope) the images I am constantly taking.  Because of you I feel more confident as an artist and that helps me improve my skills, and I really appreciate you all.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Gratitude

My internet wanderings yesterday led me to a unique blog project called  "Spring: Inspiration in Bloom."

It's a brand-new venture, so I don't know much about it, but I liked what I read on their site:

"Spring’s primary mission is to infuse inspiration into the lives of other creative and passionate individuals, to bring together like-minded individuals within a space that is focused on the journey involved with bringing dreams to life, and the reality that accompanies following a unique vision."

I believe the posts will be in video form, as conversations among the four ladies who are collaborating on this project.  They are looking for ideas and thoughts on the topic of gratitude for their first video, airing the week of Thanksgiving.  If you have input to share, visit them and leave a comment or send an e-mail.  I'm curious to see this vision come together.

While visiting, I couldn't help but think about the theme of gratitude.  The first cohesive thought that popped into my head was that gratitude is the difference between happy and unhappy people. Every unhappy person has a reason (sometimes many, very good reasons) to be unhappy, but that gets in the way of appreciating what they have, right now.

I feel like I'm a pretty positive person, who rarely has a 'bad' day, but I wasn't always like that. It was learning to let go of the bad things, and to be appreciative - grateful - for the good things, large and small, that made all the difference. If you take every instance that crosses your path, and find the good in it, and if there is no good in it, let it go, I think you can train yourself to feel grateful, and as a result, happier.



This image is one that came to mind whilst pondering the topic.  I took this in New Orleans, behind the Habitat House we were working on.  There was lots of debris on the block, and behind this house, but even so, this pretty little vine was growing - no, thriving - amidst it all.  The way the sun shines on it, leaving the debris in the shadow, reminds me that we can embrace the positive in this world and leave the negative behind.

I think for the days until Thanksgiving, I will post about that which I am thankful for.  It's a long list, but today I begin with God, for giving me the power to choose how I will react to all the things that happen to me in a day, and for the ability to pass on to Him all the negativity I encounter so that I may be relieved of it.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Leeks

Last night I made potato and leek soup.  Leeks are one of my favorite vegetables to eat and to look at.  I always forget how pretty they are until I slice into them, revealing beatiful rings that grade from white to deep green to yellow. 

Friday, November 13, 2009

White Cows


I love photographing white cows, especially these gals that sort of blend into the landscape.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Empty Pool


When I lived in Guernsey, I walked one block to the post office every day and passed the public pool.  They drained it in the winter (which really begins in autumn), of course, and left this ladder to nowhere and scuffed blue paint that ranged from nearly white to turquoise.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

It Doesn't Get Any More Fall Than This



I took these at my friend's house in Denver in early October.  I just got back from another quick visit and they are all gone, now.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Drying Hydrangeas


I saw these hydrangeas drying on the bush while walking around Yellow Springs, OH.  They are one of my favorite flowers when in full bloom, and I thought they were beautiful still in this state.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Autumn Colors


In honor of the very decent fall weather we've be honored with the past week, I'm going to share some of my favorite autumn photos.  There is something very appealing to me about this one...I'm not quite sure why and it doesn't even have a name.  Suggestions?

Friday, November 6, 2009

Glendo Reservoir



Another day I took the inlaws to Glendo Reservoir, which is one of the most popular places in the state for boating in the summer.  It's just 30 miles up the road, but Bri and I had never been.  We drove around the lake, which was very low for the winter.  There was no one else visiting, so we got to see some wildlife, including this herd of deer that we watched walk around the edge of the water.  I loved the range of colors  made by the water, the trees and the red shores. 

Since we had company, I neglected to put together an Etsy Plug this week, so this is the last you'll hear from me until Monday.  Forgive me!  And have a lovely weekend.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Looking East At The Full Moon


My husband's parents are in town, and one day when he had to work, I drove them to Laramie for a day trip.  Driving home, heading East, we saw the full moon rise, looking much larger in person, while the setting sun painted everything purple.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

One Year in Wheatland


Well, we've been in our new house for a year.  I guess I can quit calling it the 'new' house, now.  I remember painting several rooms last October, and moving truckloads of stuff from our Guernsey residence the last weekend of October, when it was drizzling snow.  I'm ashamed to say that I still have a room or two to paint, and that I have eight boxes left to unpack, but for the most part, we are all moved in and this feels very much like home.  It did from the very start, really.  And what a difference a house makes.  To have a little bit of space in this vast state, carved out just for us, well, it feels like a cocoon.  We are safe and warm and happy here, Brian and I and Happy and Little Bear.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

FEATURED ON: The RikRak Studio

Thanks to the lovely K. over at Rikrak for the beautiful thankyou feature this morning on her blog.  That's  my "Custom House Handrail" print in the upper righthand corner.  K. just made 2000 sales with her Etsy shop and is kindly featuring some of her fellow Etsy sellers that were also customers.  You may remember RikRak was the subject of the Etsy Plug two weeks ago.  If you liked what you saw, then head over today (and today only) for 20% off your purchase!  Read all the rules for the sale on her blog.

Monday, November 2, 2009

WINNER: Buffalo Herd Giveaway

The winner of the "Buffalo Herd" giveaway is The Snob!  Thank you to everyone who entered.  You all made my week and made this the best giveaway yet at A Mile A Minute.

One more bit of news this morning - I did take this print out of my Etsy store, but I replaced it with a new buffalo print, called "What Are You Looking At?"  Just wanted to let you know.  Have a great week, everyone.