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Saturday, February 25, 2012

How to paint a primrose.

The primerose and the pear.

Every year, Mark picks up a potted primrose for our kitchen windowsill. And every year I try to take a photo of it. This year was the most successful, in part thanks to Lauren's cooperation.

 Red and yellow primrose

Today was my turn to choose a topic for the daily challenge group. When I choose topics, I try to pick something general, especially if I don't have anything in mind to shoot for that day (Gives me some flexibility!). This week, I chose "Art" as the topic. I took this series inside of our kitchen sink. I'll have to try that again sometime because it works really well as a white background.

How the primrose got its color.

Never one to shy from recycling an idea, I wanted to try something similar to this, only with a paint brush. Lauren wasn't thrilled about playing artist, but she complied on the promise that shortly thereafter I would help her build a horse stall out of Legos.

Painting a primrose

Here's a close-up version. When we were finished, I said to her, "Now, was that so bad?" She then replied, "Yes! I can't be still!"

I know, Lauren. I know.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Blue Bomber 1, Red Rocker 0.

Game over.

Today's challenge was "game," and even though it was an easy one, I wasn't planning on participating because I wasn't feeling particularly inspired. Then later in the evening when Lauren and I were playing in her room, I remembered that Grandma and Pappy had given her Rock'em, Sock'em Robots for Christmas one year, so I thought I'd fire off a quick shot of one punching the other out. Lucky for me, Lauren actually wanted to participate in this one because her expression totally makes it. Oh, and she insisted that the Blue Bomber be victorious since blue is her favorite color, even though I had already posed red to win. Better luck next time Red Rocker...

Monday, February 20, 2012

Down on the farm.

Farm sink.

Mark was recently lamenting that it's been months since he renovated the kitchen, and I had yet to take any photos of the antique farm sink that he painstakingly installed himself. So I obliged today. He was disappointed that I didn't get a full length shot of the sink which included the legs and told me that a more aggressive photographer would have climbed on top of the kitchen island and stood there to get the shot. I just as soon rather get a super wide angle lens.

Hanging pots and pans.

Although Mark purchased the sink from a seller in Massachusetts, it was actually made here in Pittsburgh. So like one of those lost dog stories, it somehow made its way back home after about 80 years.

Nothing much else new to report - just sad to see a four day weekend come to a close. Our school district had an in-service day on Friday, so I took off to hang out with Lauren. Sunday morning was spent managing the cookie delivery for our troop - 127 cases worth of Thin Mints, Tag-a-longs, Samoas, etc. For reference, one can fit approximately 60 cases in a MINI Cooper Clubman. If we didn't have two other people helping with their SUVs, I think the cookie delivery guys would have kept trying to fit even more.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Let sleeping dogs lie.

Sleepy Marcus.

Okay, so I admit that in my kitty fever I completely forgot to share this photo. This one should have been Day 16 in the 25 Days of Christmas (Marcus's birthday). I purchased this custom doggie bed as a gift for his birthday, but unfortunately the makers were incredibly behind. So behind, that it just arrived in the mail only last weekend. It was worth the wait though because he was so happy with his new doggie bed that we could hardly get him up from it.

St. Valentine's Eve.

 Valentine's Day magnets.

It used to be that Valentine's Day wasn't even on my radar, but now that I have a school-aged child, I'm finding that I have to make all kinds of preparations for this holiday. For example, this weekend Lauren made a Valentine's Day craft in the form of foam magnets. We also arranged a family assembly line for filling out valentines for Lauren's classmates. Lauren signed them and passed them to me, and then I added a stickers and passed them to Mark, who folded and sealed them. We were very efficient and would have made Henry Ford proud.

 Sprinkled cookies ready for the oven

And if you're going to have holiday, you need to bake cookies, right?

These are my cousin Noreen's famous thumbprints. They are a family recipe, and everyone loves them. I made them for the first time at Christmas and thought that they deserved an encore for Valentine's Day. I'll probably make them again for Easter.

 Making thumbprints.

My little helper was a little overzealous with the sprinkles. We ended up using the whole jar on just one dozen. Luckily, I still had some pecans left from Christmas baking, so we rolled the second dozen in crushed pecans just like the original recipe.

Warm from the oven.

Here's the finished product. Aren't they pretty? Maybe Lauren had the right idea using the entire container of sprinkles after all!

Friday, February 10, 2012

Crazy lil' Coconut.


So the kitty now has a name. I guess it's about time I provide a little background on how she came to be part of the family. Over the past year, Lauren has been after us to get a cat. We've been hesitant to do so because we already have our hands full with Daisy and Marcus (Especially Marcus). Additionally, there were the logistics of where to put the cat food and litter box without the dogs taking unwanted snack breaks. Unfortunately, Beavis spent most of her time in our basement because that was the only place to keep her kitty supplies safe from the dogs. So we told Lauren that we would consider getting a cat only after Daisy went to the big pet show, when we would only have one dog to work around.

But you know how it goes. Before you know it, you're in pet stores looking at sorrowful cats in need of homes. Then you're looking at websites of local shelters to see if there's anyone that catches your eye. We knew we wanted a nice sized, adult cat who could hold her own against the dogs. We also wanted one who was affectionate, playful and had a unique look.

What does a gal have to do to get a drink around here?

And that's what we got.

Coconut was originally a stray that was adopted and then back in January was found stray again at three years old. I can't imagine why someone would let such a wonderful cat slip through their fingers. Their lost is our gain.

We're still trying to work through the logistics with the dogs. The good news is that Kitty Coconut is not terrified of the dogs, but is more cautiously curious about them. Daisy has been around cats so no worries there. However, Marcus may take some time and work. Airedales have strong chasing instincts, but even if his hunting mode doesn't kick in, he is still a big dope who doesn't know his own strength.

And yes, it's no coincidence that she is the most photogenic kitty on the planet.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

The cat... out of the bag.


Things are kind of hectic here between the new addition and other things, so more to come. :)