Where do they all come from?

Ever since I published that post the other day about the romance between two snow people in my yard, snow people have been springing up everywhere around my house! I don’t know what they want. Maybe my yard has become a dating mecca for snow singles, or maybe they just want their pictures in my blog. Maybe they are just starved for attention. They’ll be gone when it warms up later today – I hope.

They're everywhere.
They’re everywhere now.

Snowperson-pineneedlehair Grasshaired-snowperson Snowperson-stick

This really happened…

Out of the frozen Piedmont of North Carolina, a snowy figure arose and walked and walked and walked, searching for he knew not what, until he finally sat down to rest at the bottom of a driveway in Cedar Grove. He did not question the reason for his existence, he only wished he were not so miserably cold and alone. He hung his head, and studied his breath gently blowing from his mouth in white clouds.

Cold, weary snowman shivers alone.
Cold, weary snowman shivers alone.


Suddenly, he felt a soft touch on his neck, and turned to look into the warm dark eyes of a stranger, yet he knew in his heart that this was his beloved, finding him at last, just as he was about to give up his search. Enjoying the warmth of their embrace, they melted away.

20150228_154958 20150228_155010

The end.

A Western Doodle

Curly was the meanest, rootenest, tootenest, doodle in the West, pictured here with his trusty sidekick, Butch the Scorpion. Curly pulled off many a sting with Butch, charmed the ladies, rode many a mile together in the dusty desert. Curly never uncurled to show what he looked like on the inside. Some say he hid a sentimental inscription by his dear, departed mother. Some others say he hid a nasty scar. Whatever the reason, as rough and tough as was his reputation, he was always quick to kindly joke a child’s tears into laughter, or help a little old lady across the street.


Dedicated to my friends and family in the Southwest.

There’s a word for it…

When conversation lags with family on holiday get-togethers, it’s always good to bring out the word board games. Lately, we’ve been playing a lot of UpWords®, an old board game which is a 3D relative of Scrabble (I’m actually surprised when I run into people that don’t know what it is). Basically, after several minutes of playing, you can see towers of letters forming in areas, in contrast to flatter areas, so you can sort of get the effect of a downtown and suburbs with words.

Today’s Christmas doodle was generated during a typical recent UpWords game in our house, in which participants take great care and much time in choosing just the right word or combination of words to gain points. Many times we think up words which are perfectly good words, but they just have not yet been assigned a meaning in the English language, so unfortunately we can’t use them. This doodle is dedicated to those words which have not yet been born. Merry Christmas, y’all!

Words that don't exist, but should, in UpWords.
Words that don’t exist, but should, in UpWords.

Great eggs-pectations II

Results from yesterday confirmed this morning. I CAN make the perfect non-sticking omelette.

Today's omelette has spinach, garlic, onions, tomatoes, cheese and oregano in it.
Today’s omelette has spinach, garlic, onions, tomatoes, cheese and oregano in it.

This is without Teflon®, without any special nonstick vegetable spray. After adding the eggs to some melted butter covering the bottom of the skillet, you simply have to keep the pan moving over relatively high heat, lifting and tilting it periodically to get the runny stuff underneath, and keep loosening the edges of the omelet with a spatula.


Why did it take me this long (decades) to get around to mastering this fairly easy skill? How many people are out there still letting the best part of their eggs adhere like cement to the pan, causing many minutes of soaking and scouring afterwards?

This may cause me to examine other parts of my life that I might be stuck because of inertia or inattentiveness.

When I get around to it.

…added Prego® spaghetti sauce.

Great eggs-pectations realized

Today marks a life achievement – I made a perfect omelette.

By perfect, I mean an omelette that does not stick to the pan.

I am not much of a cook. My husband and I tend to think of food more as fuel than a gastronomical experience because we are always absorbed in the doing of other things. During special occasions, my husband can generally rouse himself out of the daily grub routine and produce spectacular pizza and chiles rellenos, among other delights, but I usually stick with what I know, which is spaghetti. I do enjoy watching old cooking shows: Julia Child, Two Fat Ladies, (anyone remember the Galloping Gourmet?), plus cake decorating shows, but it is a lazy, anthropological interest, not usually one that will drive me in from the garden or away from the computer to actually cook something excitingly new.

Also, I come from a long line of women who scraped the pan out after cooking eggs, and I suppose I felt I did not deserve to be different. But this morning, I stood up straighter in front of the stove, I shook my head, and after pouring the beaten eggs into the melted butter, grabbed the skillet with one firm hand and spatula in the other, and kept the pan moving over the fire, loosening the edges of the beautifully coagulating mixture and encouraging the runny part to move underneath with the spatula, just like I’d seen a thousand times on cooking shows and at buffet brunches, and – SUCCESS!

Cheese, broccoli, tomatoes and marjoram were added after I turned off the fire.
I’ll never scrape out the pan ever AGAIN!

Code doodle

I doodled this yesterday while I was brushing up on my code (the online presentation with huge, all-caps titles was hard to look at after awhile, so I doodled while I listened.)

I actually drew this on on nice paper for a change, other than my usual lined notebook paper, ripped open envelope or back side of flowery stationary.
I actually drew this on on nice paper for a change, other than my usual lined notebook paper, ripped open envelope or back side of flowery stationary. I drew this upside-down from what is shown, but it looks better in this 180 degree rotation.

Sheep, Pig and Rabbit reunited

Sheep and Pig have finally returned home to rejoin Rabbit in an emotional reunion last weekend. The three papier maché animals, along with a life-sized llama, made Heifer International newsletter headlines when they helped raise $3,000 for that most worthy cause a few years ago. Last weekend we retrieved them from storage at my church.

Sheep and Pig join Rabbit at home!

Poor Llama had to be put down, because of two broken legs. I blame her creator (me) for this, because she did not know what she was doing when she dove into all this papier maché making. Pictures documenting the creation of these animals, plus some shots of those who collaborated with me in the making, are here.

Llama, we will miss you. We'll see you under that paper moon on the other side of the cardboard sea.
Llama, we will miss you. We’ll see you under that paper moon on the other side of the cardboard sea.

Now that my studio has definitely taken on an Orwellian character, I’m thinking about adding a couple more characters to my Animal Farm collection (now that I know better how to build a supporting frame for the papier maché). I’d like to add a chicken or two and a cow, and would really like to build a Percheron, but because of spatial limitations, might have to settle for a Shetland pony, or perhaps even a Przewalski’s horse. Then maybe we could stage a Rebellion of our own!