Sunday, April 27, 2008

Pretzel Liebchen!

I should be at church-- I went through 10 pounds of flour and made pretzels and put together a stunning basket that I saved up for to have blessed by the priest. Got the kids in my car and it wouldn't start!

Anyway-- here I am making pretzels worthy of a German biergarten making them much bigger makes it hard to get them out of the boiling water. The kids absolutely love it when I bake pretzels. You make the dough—basic bread with no oil but you add brown sugar, do the folded arms shape, let them rise then put them in a pot of boiling baking soda water for 10 seconds, flip and boil for another 10 seconds, then bake at 475 for 15 minutes or until golden. The kids get into it with me.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

I can also have fun. . .

The face was done in drawing. I had an a-ha moment today when I was working on a models' face. I used burnt umber, yellow ocher, and indigo. Suddenly, I was engaged with the paint and the model. (Usually with the exercise I am like, "This is so lame." When you are not getting the concept, you do the motions until you get it.) It was the first time I actually "got" this exercise. The paint becomes like clay on your brush. I was excited. My teacher saw it, too.

Then above that you see my palette!

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Yoga Box

This is my first slab ceramic container.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Last night: A party!

Last night I went to a going away party for one of my husband's coworkers. It was really nice. We took the kids and the kids were great. Everyone had their kids there and mine were just more to the mix. One of my husband's friends has two teenaged daughters who she just got home to the US after a terrible custody battle with her ex husband who lives in an Eastern country. They are the same age as Peaches and they immediately hit it off.

My 12 year old daughter made a Rick Rockwell inspired dish to take over-- Brie in Crust with crackers and fresh fruit on the side. It was Heavenly.

In the old days before my family got big-- before my husband and I married, I'd go to parties like this with my eldest daughters. We'd go to a professor's house and sit around with the MA students and other undergrads and eat delicious food that people had brought and everyone had a story about these favorites that they were sharing, and we'd drink delicious wines and good beer and tell funny stories. I have been so looking forward to getting back to this. I hope we will do this more.

My husband works in public health. They are state workers but they voluntarily get up in the middle of the night for emergencies to test things, he runs in to fix problems-- they are really dedicated. (I have no jokes about the so-called lazy state workers!) They talked a bit about work but they are fun people on the side-- one married couple has matching Hogs, another lady travels around the planet every chance she gets and dabbles in languages, there were a few couples with young children who were just sweet-- it was great.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

I survived today

I flunked out of second semester linguistics. I wanted to come home and curl up under the covers and just sleep. I have to drop the class. I will be reading about Transformational Grammar over the summer and I will like it.

I had meetings to attend-- my first interview for. . . a radio show that I am putting together! It went well. It turns out, they wanted me to meet with the head person before anything official was said so this was really a dry run. As soon as they found out that I was for real they sent me to their manager and were very apologetic. I couldn't have been more grateful but didn't say that. They'd never heard of my college paper or the radio station that I hooked up with.

The day was really good. Before class, I did a pretty letter for a friend-- I painted a tail-less monkey in Chinese brush on the envelope and did another one for my mom. I get credit for the envelopes that I copy and put in my sketch book but I'd do them anyway because they make me a better artist and my letters are fun to receive. It's an honor that he likes them, as well.

I went to music and for the first time I had fun. I sang The Hippopotamus Song.

The Hippopotamus Song

Words by Michael Flanders
Music by Donald Swann and Michael Flanders

A bold Hippopotamus was standing one day
On the banks of the cool Shalimar.
He gazed at the bottom as it peacefully lay
By the light of the evening star.

Away on the hilltop sat combing her hair
His fair Hippopotamine maid.
The Hippopotamus was no ignoramus
And sang her this sweet serenade.

Mud! Mud! Glorious mud!
Nothing quite like it for cooling the blood.
So, follow me, follow, down to the hollow,
And there let us wallow in glorious mud.

The fair Hippopotamus he aimed to entice,
From here seen on the hilltop above,
As she hadn't got a ma to give her advice,
Came tip-toeing down to her love.

Like thunder the forest re-echoed the sound
Of the song that they sang as they met.
His enamorata adjusted her garter
And lifted her voice in duet.

Mud! Mud! Glorious mud!
Nothing quite like it for cooling the blood.
So, follow me, follow, down to the hollow,
And there let us wallow in glorious mud.

Now more Hippopotami began to convene
On the banks of that river so wide.
I wonder now what am I to say of the scene
That ensued by the Shalimar side?

They dived all at once with an ear-splitting splash,
Then rose to the surface again,
A regular army of Hippopotami
All singing this haunting refrain.

Mud! Mud! Glorious mud!
Nothing quite like it for cooling the blood.
So, follow me, follow, down to the hollow,
And there let us wallow in glorious mud.

I was never stopped while I sang and I had fun for the first time in that class. The class sang with me for the chorus.