Thursday, December 27, 2007

IF: Horizon (and Backwards)

ACEO 2.5 x 3.5 inches
color pencil
bristol board 100 lb

My favorite horizon, even though I was born and raised in Iowa. Now living near Dallas with the Gulf about a 4-5 hour drive. I love the sea.

I missed last week even though I did a quick sketch.

In Iowa we have gates, lots and lots of gates. Panel gates, aluminum gates, even wooden gates.

In Texas, at least the areas where I helped work cattle, rodeo stock, and when we were on the dairy, there are lots of gaps... strands of barb wire, twisted around a bois d arc post, then you pull it tight and secure the top and bottom with a baling wire hoop.

Gaps are a pain in the butt and backwards!

Gate vs Gap
blue ink pen
scratch pad

For more illos

Monday, December 24, 2007

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Saturday Sightings

Christmas Wagon

Here's the wagon all decked out for Christmas. This wagon sets in front of a railroad depot converted to a Dentist's office. They decorate the wagon for each season.

Have a great Saturday!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

And the Winner of Giveaway #3

A Woman who is In a Garden Check out her Holiday Home Tour, too! A beautiful home!


Thank you to all who commented and entered my Holiday Home Tour Giveaway! More giveaways coming up in 2008!

Monday, December 17, 2007

2007 Holiday Home Tour & My 3rd Giveaway

Follow your guide, BooMama, for the 2007 Holiday Home Tour.

Welcome to my home.

Snowman Welcome

Snowman w sled

Gingerbread 85 ManGingerbread 85 girl

I collect Snowman.
Occasionally a non Snowman will find it's way into my Christmas Decor.

Gingerbread 85

I made this pair of Gingerbread Peeps in 1985.

Snowman teapot



Angels for all seasons. The Christmas Angel is on the lower right.

Snowman Mantle left

Snowman Mantle Middle

Snowman Mantle right

Snowman pillow

Tree close up



christmas past

This photo and the one below are from Christmas two years ago

christmas past tree



hot cocoa or tea

Tea or Hot Cocoa?

kitchen snowman

If you would like to enter My 3rd Giveaway please leave a comment. This giveaway will end Wednesday, December 19, at 10pm CST

This Giveaway includes:

One Reindeer Gift Bag, featured in the "How To Make" this bag post

Reindeer Gift Bag 7

Three original ACEO/ATCs created by me.

Christmas Pointsettia

Christmas Ornaments

Christmas Gift

And Chocolate! As featured in the Quick & Easy Gift post.

Teacher Gift 14

Thank you so much for stopping by my Holiday Home.

Enjoy your visits to the other homes on the tour. Please follow your guide, BooMama, to the next home.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Saturday Sightings: Odd House Continued...Finally

Some of you may remember this house from this Saturday Sighting Post

firstnikonpics 010

Based on comments on that post I went back to take more photos so you could see the neighborhood.

I had been driving around looking for potential lakeside property. Texas only has one natural lake the rest are all man made. The Lake near me is man made. Instead of having million dollar homes with boat docks gracing it's shores. The Corp of Engineers owns and manages most of the shoreline. There are several public parks scattered here and there that go down to the water to allow access for swimming and boating. I do have more photos to give you an idea of what the majority of the homes look like surrounding the Corp property but for now I will continue the story of this interesting house.

My first glimpse of it was at this very sharp curve where I did come to a stop when I spied the gargoyle.

What the Heck?

Picture 029

Instead of turning to the left I continued forward. (at that time this mobile home on the corner had a bank foreclosure for sale sign in the yard)

Picture 030rz

Three stories, angles and doors everywhere. And no shingles.

Picture 031

Here is the neighbor on the right. (my Mom taught me if I couldn't say anything nice, shut up)

Picture 032

I am glad they were not home so I could pull into their driveway to take a few more pictures.

Picture 033

See that door up on the third floor? Matches the one on the other side. Some type of plastic sheeting flapping in the wind. No siding. Click to see larger photo if interested.

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While I was leaving this little covert photography session the new neighbors, who apparently purchased the bank repo came outside.

The man walked to the center of the road with a gun in his hand.

A caulking gun. I stopped so he could ask me what I was doing. I told him my step dad was a hobbyist carpenter (he really is) and he had seen the photos I had taken a couple of weeks before and I came back out to take a few more since this house was such a carpenter's nightmare.

Did you think I was going to tell him .... I am soooo blogging this!

He did tell me the gentleman that lives there, yes, lives in a room in the back, is building this house in his spare time. He is single. That is all the info I got this trip.

I'll keep checking on his progress.

This is the view as I was going back the way I came. Yes, I was stopped in the road. Again. It's the country.

At the end of this very long dirt road should be the lake. No way was I going down there. By My Self.

Those signs say "enter at your own risk. The boogie man with the hook for a hand is down there".

Okay, the signs say something about no dumping.

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I do wonder if he will be able to even see the lake from his third floor. With two doors up there I would imagine he is going to build some kind of deck. Original post is here for more photos

So y'all got any What the Heck houses near you?

A Day Late...

Not to confuse anyone, including me, I am back dating a couple of posts to Friday. Where they should have been if I wasn't so busy. Then I took a nap. And...well, I read a few blogs and before I knew it I fell asleep. Now it's Saturday. I'm baking. Downloading and uploading photos for said back dated posts.

And...ta da

I added a blogroll. Finally! Many more Reads to Come though.

Check back through out the day. New posts coming. Including tutorial for a quick, easy last minute gift for teachers, mail carriers, UPS man, hairdresser, neighbor, etc.

The winner of my 2nd Giveaway is Farmer Julie. Congrats!

Update: Be sure to scroll back to Friday. The posts I back dated are up. If you still have gifts to buy you might like the tutorial for Quick and Easy Gifts that is very inexpensive.

I'm working on the Saturday Sighting post now. I took a small break from baking and blogging to watch "Love's Unfolding Dream" on Hallmark. Such a wonderful series!

Friday, December 14, 2007

Quick and Easy Gift for Teachers

Not only a gift for teachers, but these make great gifts for your mail carriers, your hairdresser, your colorist, your paperboy, the UPS driver, your doorman, the farmer who mows your pasture, the sheriff deputy that tells you just shoot the dogs chasing the horses (I didn't shoot the dogs, btw)... you get the idea. These make great gifts. Inexpensive gifts!

A couple of these finished.

Teacher Gift 13

Teacher Gift 15

Now for the directions. This time of year most of the grocery stores have the huge candy bars on sale 10 bars for $10. That is 10 gifts!! Woohoo! A dollar a piece, not counting craft supplies. Walgreens and CVS carry these bigger candy bars as well.

Teacher Gift 1

Remove the wrapper and set the candy bar aside. You will need it later so no eating it.

Teacher Gift 2

Lay the wrapper on a piece of white card stock. Add another inch to the left of the wrapper or to the right if you are a lefty.

Teacher Gift 3

Yours should look like this, too.

Teacher Gift 4

Cut out it out. This is your template. Use it to trace all the rest you want to make. Forever.

Teacher Gift 5

If you are a Room Mom doing this project with your class or a Mom doing this with little kids I recommend using copy paper for these next steps. Room Moms and Moms with Martha tendencies you will want to use card stock.

Wrap the paper around the candy bar. Using copy paper just crease with your fingers.

Using card stock use the sharp edge of a ruler and a bone folder. Sorry, Martha, I left mine at home so I made the creases with my fingers. Much easier with a bone folder.

Teacher Gift 6

Those using card stock, remove candy bar and continue to use the ruler and bone folder to crease those edges. (Copy paper users can skip this step.)

Teacher Gift 7

Card stock should look like this. (using copy paper, the objective is to have an area to decorate)

Teacher Gift 8

If you are doing several of these and using card stock... unfold the one you just did and use it as a template to mark the fold lines on the rest of the paper for the number of gifts you want to make.

This step is a lot easier than wrapping the card stock around each candy bar. Draw light pencil marks, lay the ruler on the card stock, fold around ruler and crease.

Teacher Gift 9

Three different colors. Ready to decorate.


Teacher Gift 10

Now you get to unfold it. Don't worry it will crease again nicely after decorating.

Teacher Gift 11

Now the fun part.

You or the kids can decorate these with whatever you have on hand. They can draw Christmas or Holiday scenes using crayons or markers. Use Stickers, glue on fun foam shapes, stamp directly on surface, use paper punches to punch out shapes. You could even glue macaroni on these. Really! Just have fun.

Teacher Gift 12

When the decorating is completed. Wrap the copy paper or card stock around a candy bar... secure with tape (or you can use a glue stick with tape to hold it closed until glue dries then remove the tape)

Ta Da!! You can make these for any occasion as well. Valentine's Day, Boss's Day, My Friend Needs Chocolate Day... any day you want!

Teacher Gift 14

Teacher Gift 16

My daughter made theses gifts for ALL her High School teachers. Every Year! The Band teachers usually got Symphony Bars!

Yes, she was usually the only student giving the High School teachers presents at Christmas and at the end of the year.

Hey, they might have made me retire as a Room Mom when my daughter was in 7th grade (I had been a Room Mom since kindergarten) but they couldn't stop me from getting the teacher's gifts even when she was in High School. Once a Room Mom always a Room Mom.


I hope you enjoy making these quick and easy gifts! Send me a photo. I would love to see what you, your kiddos, or your class created. Email to enigmaartist at gmail dot com