Monday, 26 December 2011

A Magical Christmas

Here are some photos documenting some of our Christmas loot (from which Ben is absent as he was working.  boo!) (I am holding up the plaid shirt I got him in his stocking and am wearing the one he got me).


And this is a painting that I've been working on for a while.  It was sort of an experiment: Ben brought home a slab of old wood that his work was throwing away and I spent an evening alternately watching heartland and staring at it, finding landscapes and images in it, until I found one I wanted to paint.  And then I did.  I couldn't show it on here before, because it was intended as a gift for Andrea.  So here it is: what do you think?


I also gave Andrea another painting but forgot to take a picture of it..Andrea would ya mind?  Maybe take one of it where you hung it up.  I'd like to see it in your home.

Hope everyone had as magical of a Christmas as I did!

Saturday, 24 December 2011

merry christmas eve!

Last night Ben and I made homemade perogies so to be eaten tonight on the eve of Christmas.  It is to be a tradition.  We used extra aged white cheddar, bacon, and caramalized onions in the filling, and it was delicious (what I snuck) but now I hear of a Rebar cookbook version that uses smoked gouda and sweet potatoes.  Um, yes!I think I will try that one next year.  But in the meantime Ben and I are sure to enjoy our homemade perogies tonight.  You can imagine us feasting on it if you want.

Can you believe it's Christmas tomorrow?  Without all the family around, bustling to get all the last minute shopping and baking done, Christmas has sort of snuck up on me.  Which is a shame, because we all know that half the fun is anticipating the big day.  But I still intend to make the most of it.  I can't wait until my children are older and I can ride their wave of excitement and happiness.

Tuesday, 20 December 2011

pop

My parents came home almost 5 months earlier than planned from the West Indies.  My Dad told me via skype one night, and I was so excited I could hardly wait to tell Ben when he came home from work.






How did he know??!

Friday, 16 December 2011

Too Many Children's Books, a Rat, and Some Sketches

Owen never liked us reading to him.  He can't seem to sit still and listen to a story.  He has to grab the book and turn the pages and play games on it with his fingers.  Angus on the other hand, it a nut about books.  Ben and I have taken to hiding them, because if he spots one he will not rest until we have read it a hundred times.  He throws it in (one of our) laps and grunts and clambers on to us and settles in expectantly.  When we are done he will grab it and throw it at us again.  It is a never-ending cycle.

This tendency of spending 89% of our days reading children's books has affected Ben in the strangest way.  The other day, I got up with the kids intending Ben to sleep in.  When he showed up stumbling into the kitchen a mere 20 minutes later I asked him what he was doing:
And this is how he answered me:

It's a line from one of Angus' favourite books,' Little Tractor'.


And the other day, this happened:

'
That's when I started to worry that reading all those children's books was causing a permanent problem with Ben's brain.

Anyways, to move on, it's been snowing here all night and all day, and if I still lived on the island, school would have been cancelled for sure.  But this is Williams Lake, and Ben told me of a time when he was in high school and it was 32 below and school stayed open.  Regardless of snow, we went Christmas shopping today and I met a lady who had a rat nestled comfortably in her cleavage while we talked.  She called it Kate and I could see the outline of it's thick, hairless tail under the fabric of her shirt.

To move on again...Over a year ago, I was drawing in my sketch book, copying a picture from a magazine, and suddenly, out of nowhere, I felt an overwhelming feeling of unfulfilled-ness.  So what, I thought, I can copy a picture.  Big deal.  What does that really say?  It's creating your own images that really say something about your art.  So right then and there I stopped the tiresome copying and decided to just create my own images.  For over a year I haven't copied a single thing and have practised drawing, well, mainly humans--because that's what I like to draw.  Here's some of what I came up with over that time.




(You have to forgive the quality of my scanner.  As soon as I'm rich I will get a much better one).  I like the sketchy, windy, loose quality of the second one.  Sometimes you just need to scribble and see what happens under your pencil.

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Wasting Time + a Sketch

I haven't posted in a while.  That's because I've been busy doing this:


And this:


And this: (this is me working out in case you couldn't tell.  Ben thought it was a picture of me about to blow up.)

Oh and lots of this.  The library has been good to me.  I got particularly into this wonderful book called 'The Truth About Forever' by Sarah Dessen.  It was sooo good. Donneven.

I also took out 'The Hunger Games' today...might as well see what all the fuss is about, right?  Apparently it's the next new series, and I'm down for a new one.

The other day Ben was going through our old computer desk and throwing stuff out, and he was going to through this out.  I sketched it a year or so ago and forgot about it.  Now I like it.  You know, what's funny is I'm seeing scalloped shorts like that everywhere now.  Especially on this girl, who's blog I follow.


Anyhow, I realize what are the fub's part 3 is taking a while to show it's face.  That's because I can't think of what to include in it.  I don't necessarily want it to be a chronological thing, I just want it to have significant things in it.  It's the final chapter.  Does anyone have suggestions?

Gotta go, I have Christmassy things to whip up.

Sunday, 4 December 2011

I am Messy.

People who know me really well know that I'm not a neat person.  My room as a teenager was usually an ocean of clothes.  Just ask anybody in my family about the famed petrified breakfast burrito incident of 2002.
(just to be fair...I was in a hurry to get ready and forgot about it one morning and probably knocked it off my bed with my backpack or something.  The bottom line is there it stayed for many a month).

I am not proud of this.  However, I grew up in a neat and tidy home and that is what I'm used to and that's the way I like to live.  So when I got married and became mainly responsible for the state of the house, this was a definite conflict of interest.  I learned soon enough that I simply had to keep the house clean, so I did.  Turns out, it was easy (this was before we had kids).   Actually, not long after Ben and I got married we moved to a little log cabin half-an-hour outside of town.  Ben would be gone 4 days a week for 14 long hours and I was stuck at home (pregnant) and without internet.  There actually was TOO MUCH time.  I had to parcel out the housework so that it would last me all day.

Then we had kids.  Two.  In two years.  These days, this is how my house will look at any given moment:


I remember once complaining to Mom about the transition from doing just my laundry to trying to keep up with mine and Ben's.  I laugh now when I think about that--so cute.  Plus you should have heard Mom's non-judgemental answer consisting of her grappling with similar struggles when she had to do laundry for 7 children.

Anyways, living in a sty in still an unacceptable state, and yet, when I try to remedy the situation of my house by maybe, say, tackling the dishes, this is what happens more often than not:

This slows me down considerably.  But I still slog on.  It's kind of like running on a treadmill.  By the afternoon I'm exhausted and the house is still a mess.  About now I hit a sort of wall.

This is the moment, of course, when some kind person decides to knock on my door out of the blue.  They look around them, startled--I can see them note the onions rolling on the floor (unaware that I've gathered up the cursed things three times already that day).

I can see the realization slowly dawn on them.  Oh.  You're gross.

Some people (usually ones who have kids) are understanding.  But there are a lot of others (also some who have kids--how do they do it??) who's houses I can only presume are always perfect, no matter what time of day I would care to knock on their door.

I have to believe I'm not the only one like this.  Please tell me I'm not alone!

Friday, 2 December 2011

Last night while zombie-ing in front of netflix

I drew this:

 Then I had fun experimenting with digitally enhancing it.  It's hard to do much when I drew it in pencil.  I need to take some classes or something so I can learn how to do that better...

I also drew this.



drawing is so fun.  I like that this blog motivates me to do artsy things more often.  It's good for a fub's soul.

Thursday, 1 December 2011

Snow Babies and Snow Capped Hills

Yesterday before Ben left for work (graveyard) we bundled the kids in their snow gear and took them outside to play in the snow.  All we had for Angus was this funny little puffy one-piece suit that was kind of girly.  He looked so cute I could have cried.  But predictably after 5 minutes this happened:

So then we came back inside.  I'm impatient for them to grow big so we can have real fun when it snows...but at the same time, my heart aches because they are getting so big.  Owen doesn't even have any fat on him any more.  And Angus is talking.  TALKING.

I stayed up late last night painting and watching The Office.  It was good.  But then when I snuggled under the covers to go to sleep, instead I started reading a book and ended up staying awake much too late.  Luckily the kids slept in until 7, but even so when Ben finally arrived home at 7:30 I was a ragged mess.

I drove him to his parents to sleep so I could work on our room today.  And that is a recap of my boring evening/morning.  Aren't you glad I shared?

This is what I've been doing with that painting I posted the other day--adding tree-d hills.



 I'm definitely taking inspiration from my surroundings.  I live in an oblong bowl with snow-capped mountains on every side.  It can be very pretty.  You just have to ignore all the smoke stacks and industrial buildings.

Also, in the name of art, as I was looking for scrap paper this morning, I came across this.  I don't even remember drawing it, it must have been years ago.  I must not have liked it very much (hence the scrap paper pile) but now I kind of do so I thought I'd share.

Now I have work to do.  Must go!

(who else hasn't even STARTED buying Christmas presents yet?)

Monday, 28 November 2011

What I've been Working On

The umbrella painting I started 4 or 5 years ago and it needs a lot of work.  At least I think it does.  The one below just sort of created itself under my paintbrush all in an hour.  Whereas I think it's pleasing, I don't know if it's the sort of thing people would pay money for.  Well, I'm not done with it anyway.


I'm surprising myself by feeling quite vulnerable posting these paintings on the web.  I guess I mostly show my art to family and people who are 'on my side' so to say and I'm not used to criticism...But that being said, the people who read this blog are pretty much on my side already, right?  RIGHT??!

My ego is bursting to explain that while I could always paint something more 'realistic', this sketchy style is what I love to paint.

Also I have cheap brushes and cheap paint.

Ok that's enough.  Let me know what you think!

Friday, 25 November 2011

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300 papers and things I want

This morning I staunchly ignored Owen waking up at 4:30 in the morning.  Then eventually I got up a little after six and stumbled with child in tow to the living room where I whuffed into the nearest chair.  I knew it was only a matter of minutes and I would have to corral the children and get them fed and dressed and get their coats on and bundle them into the car and drive them to their Aunt Abby and Uncle Daniel's house.  And then drive into town and venture out into the bone cracking cold and help Ben and his parents deliver papers.  We have over 300 to deliver.  I knew I had to do it, but a stubborn little part of me persisted in staying right where it was in my soft comfy chair.

But then I did it.

This was me.

It was not a pretty sight.

Speaking of cold, I need a new winter jacket badly.  You know, maybe something like this?  Or maybe something like this.  I wouldn't complain.

There is a mountain of dishes like you wouldn't believe and I also have to make two desserts for the RS thing tomorrow.  wish me luck.

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

This is what happens when we eat popcorn.

I'm working on Part 3, but in the meantime I made this up one day after trying to share some popcorn with my babies...

Angus is at that stage where he thinks it's hilarious to feed me.
About now I'm thinking WHY did I do this.

Saturday, 19 November 2011

Who/What Is/Are the 'Fubs Part 2

The Second period of growth is what I like to call the Beastial Period.  This is when 'Fub and I shot up like weeds and towered over all, boy and girls alike.  I remember a lady at church once remarking that our parents must feed us on red meat only.  (I don't see how that makes sense b/c a meat only diet would be very unbalanced and would likely not contribute to healthy growth) but I digress...

This is pretty much how it was:


Our giant beast-like size did come in handy sometimes.  Like when we got a new playground installed at our school with a chicken-fighting bar. Just one swipe of a meaty paw and the opposition went flying.  Nobody messed with us...


But there were also definite cons (other than being a beast, I mean), such as people thinking we were much older than we were.  There was the time at the pool when a creepy 19 year old male tried to pick us up.


This time period wasn't ALL about our giant size though.  We did do other things other than pushing people off of bars and hide from un-blinking chapped-lip older men.  Probably one of our favourite things was playing with/torturing our dog, Shadow (before you judge, we did not name her that).  We especially liked forcing her to do aerobic movements.

she did not particularly appreciate this:

To review:
-We were huge
-We beat people up
-We lost a little bit of innocence regarding the opposite sex
-We spent hours torturing our dog

That pretty much sums it up.  By about age 14 most people had caught up in size and our beastial period was officially at an end. Yay!  Stay tuned for part 3...

Wednesday, 16 November 2011

What/Who is/are the 'fubs? Part 1

I thought I'd address this early on.


We have had the usual twin experiences:

wild, extremely intense fighting:


Eerie twin connections. (I'm not willing to disclose the two words which comprised our secret language, although a lot of you already know them)


And heartbreaking moments,--like when our Mom told the hairdresser to give us matching Farra Fawcett hair cuts.  The result in our thick, curly hair was that we garnered the nicknames 'cat' and 'owl' from our classmates in Elementary School.  It was not good.

To review:

-We are twins
-We are a lot alike
-We have shared experiences growing up that formed us into the curious and (little bit) twisted individuals we are today
-the clothes we wore as kids used to be ugly but now they're cool again.  Whaddaya know?
-We are best friends.
-We are 'fubs.

Saturday, 12 November 2011

trip down a creative path

Its time for a creativity celebration post again.  I try to limit my exposure to Etsy, because the same thing invariably happens.  I go into what can only be described as a creative rapture and become completely overwhelmed.
For example:

This lady makes coats from recycled sweaters.  Each coat is a complete work of art--so many different colours and designs!
(this last one is my favourite.  Give me a little navajo/icelandic print any day)
and look at this:


Just a block of wood painted in stripes--so simple and yet so pleasing! (find it here)

And...this bag.......

I...want...it...(here)

But then, I also love this bag.  A girl needs choices.  Especially if you're a 'fub.

(this bag is made from a recycled suit coat.  So cool!)  (here)

And from the same shop as the first bag, this doubled-sleeved hoodie sweater:


Are you starting to feel overwhelmed too?  Sigh...

Just look at this tree:

(here)
And this organic wood wall art made from white birch: (get it here)

Every time I go on etsy I am so inspired and uplifted by the sheer amount of creative diversity and talent.  I keep meaning to get up an etsy shop of my own.  I'm closer now than I ever have been, now that I've been painting again. I don't have anything ready to show yet, but when I do, I'll post it on here first.

Gotta run! (it's snowing here! boo)