4.18.2014

Crayon Dripped Easter Eggs

 I entered the Martha Stewart 
#marthasgoodeggs contest on a whim….



….and I was a finalist in the best embellished egg category for my crayon dripped eggs.





We have done these several ways. You hold a full sized crayon over a lit taper, or over a long lit lighter (the kind you might light your grill, or a candle with)…..either way, ADULT supervision is necessary :) Then you just let the wax drip onto the egg shell. Rotate the egg  to color more of the shell. I like to let one end set and dry, then flip and do the other.

The color palettes are endless, and the end result is a modern masterpiece.
(I love to add sparkly silvers and golds)
Not bad for something I learned 36 years ago in Girl Scouts!

(and sorry, voting already closed….there was a great assortment of amazing eggs!)

If you would still like to show me some love, go to @marthastewart on Instagram, find the best embellished eggs page, and vote for #8

I have no shame.


4.14.2014

A Study in Yellow

Van Gogh had hay bales, Wyeth had Helga….



It has been 6 months since I have been able to enjoy my gardens.


Spring has brought forth a sea of yellow….


Opaqued sunshine with rocket ship stamens….


Petals that look as if an artist's brush has stroked them with a carefully placed smudge of watercolor….


Couture ruffles become the highlight of this runway….


Enveloping us from our front row seat….




Casting a spell….


Drawing us back to the soil and dew….


….grabbing our hand….


….a smile echoing off of the still barren maples….


Welcome.



4.09.2014

Foggy Night

Well, I headed out for a quick photo shoot last night.
It was foggy, and I was on a mission. I wanted to take a photo of my son in his Sperry's for a contest. 
 I took a few. He wasn't impressed. I was :)


He quickly started checking his watch….not that he would start homework if we ran home, (my son the procrastinator with straight A's)…but something must be ever so important in this 15 year old's mind. Something other than Mom photographing his feet. 


Why is it ok when he is taking photos of sneakers? Hmmmm...




Ever since I was little, I have been captivated by fog. I can remember walking home alone after baton lessons, savoring the utter peace of it all….the way it enveloped my body and mind in a cocoon.
Of course, my somewhat straight hair also turned delightfully crazy….curls and waves and frizz.
I remember walking slowly…hungry for dinner but not wanting to trade this feeling for the chaos that waited behind the front door. 

It was a good chaos, of brothers and sisters and games of hide n' seek, gunfights, and Monopoly….but just the same, it somehow didn't match this place where a dreamer could dream.



 So I gave in to his persistence .    No, not so much.

I headed to the lighthouse.
What else would you do on a gorgeous foggy night?


The wide open expanse of the ocean was hidden by a thick white spray of fog.
A fog that made me want to stay a while. The lighthouse stood  more majestically this night.
White against white…strength surrounded by uncertainty.


The wind was strong and  cold, but the fog masked it, dragging me back to a place of long ago...


…a place of maybes and what ifs. 



A place where my mind worked a little faster, 
planning and hoping and just knowing that some day….


every piece of the puzzle will fit perfectly...


Fog has that power.



To make you over-think... in a good way….


…and to make you ignore  understand a 15 year old's nagging, roller-coaster of emotions….



Fifteen minutes later the sky cleared to a gorgeous painted sunset.
We were home.
Not doing homework :)



3.29.2014

A Lesson

 Those of you who have been hanging out with me for a while know a bit about cyclic vomiting syndrome.

Our 10 year old, C, was diagnosed with this migraine related disorder at age 3.

A bit of background:  CVS is a  disorder that still perplexes the medical world. It is thought to be migraine related through the maternal line (although ours is VERY strong on the paternal side).  It is a disorder that can rear its ugly head with severe bouts of nausea, stomach pain, vomiting and vertigo.  There are many known triggers….chocolate, cheese, and other foods; stress….good or bad ( a birthday, or a test for example); an illness, such as a cold, a virus, or the flu; and as is our case, TIME.  



Our daughter is in an every 80 some odd day pattern. She made it to 83 days the last time.
After waking to severe vertigo this morning, we know she will get an episode tonight. We will be ready…with bowl, hair elastic, water bottle and roll of paper towels. I will sleep with C and be there through the severe gut pains, the over the top nausea, and the vomiting so severe it makes a mother wish she could trade places with this little person who does not deserve such trauma. The vomiting will come every 15 minutes all night, and the spell will be broken at daylight. After that, a very tired little girl will lay low for the day. Unfortunately, vertigo kicks in, and even a slight movement of the head  can cause blinding vertigo. Last episode this lasted for a week, causing more nausea and vomiting; however, for C that is very unusual. She usually misses a day or two of school….but this time she also had the flu, so it made the episode much more difficult. She also missed a week of school.



Sound odd? Even unreal? Believe me, we know. We live it. She lives it. And my purpose in writing is to let others out there know that we understand! 

There are good doctors who specialize in this disorder. Wisconsin and Boston have amazing doctors ready to help at a moments notice. Unfortunately, our trip to Boston was useless. It's not good when you feel like you know more than the doctor. We have been given a new name at Mass General, a Dr. Russell, and we will look into meeting with him.  Dr. B.U.K. Li at The Medical College of Wisconsin is an expert on this disorder. He is fighting to find the causes and to develop treatments.


There is also an organization called CVSA that has been on the front line with treatment ideas, medical resources, lists of supports groups and medical professionals. They also run a yearly conference with experts from around the globe.





In between episodes, C is amazingly well. She wore a hip brace, had tortocollis, a helmet, and has Celiac Disease. Really? Because when I see her I see joy and a love of life. I see a little girl who cannot wait to have a garden this summer….who LOVES to sing….who things 4 square should be an Olympic event, and who is kind and helpful to others.

SO PLEASE DO C AND I A FAVOR.
TELL ONE PERSON ABOUT CYCLIC VOMITING SYNDROME.

WE ARE FIGHTING TO FIND A CURE…OR AT LEAST A SUCCESSFUL TREATMENT.

XO

3.26.2014

Nature Journal

I picked up a little pack of Field Notes Journals at our town's general store, Town Wharf General Store.
There's something special about taking notes in these simple little notebooks with brown paper bag covers. And once I wrap a length of twine around them I feel like I have a special nature journal, all tied up with garden secrets for the coming season.


I have decided to add a few old-fashioned varieties to our gardens this season: 
hollyhocks, morning glory,
nasturtium, sweet peas….



….so I have been doing a bit of research….both online, and in my favorite old gardening encyclopedias.


There's nothing like turning 50 year old pages and dreaming about the gardener before you who may have been planning for their little ( or big) garden….


I read with anticipation, planning carefully, thoughtfully jotting important information on seed germination and planting times.


My mind creates a mental garden map, nasturtium weaving its way up the arbor...


….hollyhocks acting as a stately back drop to the vegetable garden….


….sweet peas ready to overfill jam jars….perfuming our summer air with floral goodness….


…morning glories in varied hues to bloom by day….and a moonflower…to bloom at night.


And when I tire of the dipping mercury, or the snowy forecast, I tuck my little notebooks under my pillow, and I dream a little dream.

...



3.23.2014

Lemon Meltaways

Oh my goodness….where has March gone?
I have been busy cleaning and sorting, and taking down wallpaper….STILL!!!

Today I decided it was time to make something yummy.
It is simple, has few ingredients, and was easy to convert to gluten-free.

I used Pamela's flour blend in place of the flour….kept everything else the same.



No eggs….so lick that  batter bowl all you want1







The dough is thick and needs to be refrigerated for one hour.



As with most GF cookies, they were VERY fragile when warm, which is tricky, because you are supposed to dip in powdered sugar while warm. It just took caution and worked out fine.


I left a few without powdered sugar for the pickier 10 year old :)



Being on a diet is not fun when you have treats in the house.
I did have one. Ok, maybe two.



Enjoy!




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