Quilt Testers In Action

Quilt Testers In Action


Friday, December 20, 2013

Happy Holidays!

Hi, everybun. That is if anybun is still out there listening. Mom has been so bad with the blog (and everything else ) this year, that Santa is bringing her enough coal to heat the house for the winter. Even today, when she wanted to wish everybun Happy Solstice, Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, and stuff like that, I ended up having to do it myself.  So, yeah. Happy Whatever. And if Santa brings you any extra treats, ship them on over. I'm not sure he's even stopping here this year.

Nose bonks,

PS. Buttercup said to thank Speedy and Hannah and Harrington for the cards. So, Thank you. They tasted really good.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Still Some Flowers Out There

Fall is my favorite time of year to work in the garden. I love the crisp feel to the air, the smell of the leaves, the special quality of the light in the bright blue sky. it's nice to tidy up the garden, and put it to bed, with a whole winter to dream about how next year's garden is going to be so much better. It takes a lot of optimism to be a gardener!

While working outside today, I got to enjoy the brightly colored mums that the Curly One brought home from Gove Farm. Personally, I love the dark red mums, but the bright orange ones look really nice against our dark brown house.

The last perennial to blossom in my garden is this pale peach mum, which is just starting to blossom. The bees have to work a lot harder to find flowers now.

These two were sharing (briefly) till one moved on to a neighboring flower.
This fall,  we've had one of those mini-miracles that gardens can provide. Many years ago I bought an Electric Blue Sage plant. Two years ago it stopped blossoming, and seemed to have died off. When my husband moved a tree this year, this plant sprouted up next to it. I thought it was yet another Butterfly Weed, which is plentiful in my garden, and told him he could just pull it out. Luckily, he never got around to doing that, and look what happened! Definitely NOT an orange Butterfly Weed! A gorgeous Electric Blue Sage.  I love, love, love this color! Keeping my fingers crossed that it will survive the winter.

There are also some annuals still blooming their little hearts out, but the frost predicted for the end of the week will probably be the end of them. After that, the garden color will come from some tiny crabapples.

For a short while, that is, until the birds, squirrels, and chipmunks eat them all up.  Next they'll eat the hawthorn berries, and finally the viburnum berries. But by then, it will be time to start watching for crocuses, and the new garden season will be starting. I can hardly wait. I have plans, and next year's garden is going to be amazing! Just wait and see.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Making Messes

Hi, everybun! We have noticed an unfortunate turn of events on the interwebs lately, with Human Beans trying to embarrass their Bunny Overlords, this page being a prime example.  Clearly, you have all taken leave of what little sense you Beans have. Perhaps you should spend some time reacquainting yourself with the True Order of the Universe over at Disapproving Rabbits.

Which isn't to say that we can't make a mess if we want to, but around here, the biggest mess-maker is Mom! But maybe she can tell you about her latest adventure. I'll be back later. 
OK. First, welcome to Thumper S. Thompson. It is an honor to have a journalist of your stature reading our humble blog! Second, from the comments on my last post, it sounds like a lot of you have the tickle of the beginnings of an art journaling bug. I hope you jump in, and give it a try. It's always fun to be a kid again.
Which brings us back to mess-making! Yesterday I had my Gelli Arts printing plate out again.  I love this thing! I only needed one print, but by the end of the afternoon, I had this.
Some of these were printed more than once, and some still need some additional color. About 1/3 are wonderful. Here are a few that I like.  This first one has a print from the "wrong" side of a stencil across it.

On this one, I stamped and stenciled on top of left-over color on the plate.

The Curly One and I both like this one best.

By adding color on top of white, I even managed to get some pastels. I have a secret love of pastels, even though most of my artwork and quilts end up in deep colors.

Now, to choose one to do a LifeBook project on. This could take a while....
I'm back, but not for long. While Mom is lost in her paint daydreams, I think I'm going to head on over to Harrington's place. I feel like a party, and he's always ready to party!
 See you all later, Buns and Beans.
          -Jensen the WonderDog (that's what Mom calls me, I have no idea why.)

Monday, October 14, 2013

Art Journaling On Monday

You may have seen it around the webs. Over the last few years, art journaling has become quite a hot topic (you can find some basics here). I wasn't that interested to start with. All the examples that I saw were way beyond my fledgling art abilities, and the participants seemed extremely serious and earnest about their journal work, with lots of large social and spiritual subjects being addressed.

Then, my life started to change. The last year and a half have seen a transition, from one phase of my life to another. I've had a lot of decisions to make, and stuff to deal with, both my own, and my larger family. Early in this phase, I started keeping an art journal to help me cope. I was very formal about it, setting aside specific time for it, meditating first, trying to delve deep into the issues at hand. It was helpful, but I just couldn't keep it going.

Since that first effort, I have taken several art courses, in person, and on-line. Although I'm not all the way there yet, I've gotten more comfortable with paint, and drawing, and maybe even with myself. I'm not a formal, organized person, and that's just the way it is (you may have noticed that!). There is hardly a piece of paper around here that doesn't end up with doodles on it. This includes newspapers, bills, grocery lists, Yahtzee score sheets, everything.  With the painting classes, I am always finding myself with extra, unused paint on my palette that I hate to see go to waste. So, I've been creating a new art journal, and this is some of the stuff that is going into it.
  1. Doodles on scraps of paper
  2. Leftover paint
  3. Pictures that I find inspirational
  5. My own writing
  6. Lists
  7. Sketches for other projects
And over the top, more painting, drawing, writing, a little of everything. It's going to travel with me, sit with me in front of the Patriot's games on TV, spend time on the kitchen counter, and probably get coffee and spaghetti sauce stains on it. And it's going to be fun. I still have a lot of adjustiments to make in my life, some easy, some not. But I intend to keep having fun in my art journal along the way.

Here is a recent page, that started with leftover paint. In the smears I saw an angel, so I invited her to come forward.

I'm not much of a glitter person, but her wings seemed to need some. Now, of course, there is glitter everywhere! And below, you can see the facing page. Definitely not formal, but fun! If you are wondering about the tape, it's because the pages of this mixed-media notebook have perforations, and when I get the pages really wet, they tend to want to separate. That's OK, because it gives me a chance to play with some of the cool tapes that are on the market these days.

I know that there are some very creative and talented people who read this blog. Have you ever tried art journaling? What did you think of it? How has your style developed over time? If you haven't tried it, I encourage you to grab a grocery list, and start doodling some fun!

Friday, October 11, 2013

Dropping In...

to say a quick "Hello!" Sorry we've been away so long. Mom was away doing family things, and Dad was keeping an eye on us. He doesn't give us as much freedom as Mom does. We didn't even get to go to Speedy's birthday party! Dad said no closet shenanigans while Mom was gone. Don't worry, though. We got revenge. Somebunny pulled Dad's jacket through the gate and ate it, followed by dessert of the Curly One's jeans. Hah! That will show them!

If Mom gets her act together, we'll see you bright and early on Monday morning. Don't hold your breathe, though. I mean, a weekend is a very long time to not breathe. And besides that, Mom rarely gets her act together anymore. Have a great weekend, everybun!
Buttercup and Jensen
PS. Happy Late Birthday, Speedy! Glad you had a good one, Sweetheart.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Feeling Better

It took a while, but Jensen's hangover is finally gone. That was some party! Speedy, you are a terrific Pirate Captain. Now that we're rested, and fully powered up, we are just wondering what adventures will come our way next....

Saturday, September 14, 2013

AAARRRR! We Are Late,

and I blame Buttercup! I can't believe how long she has taken to get ready for Speedy's Pirate Party. Really, who cares what she looks like?  Oww! I mean, umm, she's so totally beautiful already.

Anyway, as Mom showed you last time, I've been ready for days.

Aren't I a handsome pirate? And now, after a lot of muttering about Jessica Rabbit, here is Pirate Princess Buttercup.
Buttercup went with red, to play up those dangerous beautiful, red eyes of hers. And she thinks her mini-skirt is very sexy. Mom said not to tell her that with her short, little legs, it's actually a maxi-skirt. I wouldn't laugh, either. Those eyes can work for evil, as well as good. 
BC says that stupid, noisy bird is a parrot. It keeps saying "as you wish, as you wish". She says she'll get rid of him, if I learn to say that. Ha! Fat chance. And now, we are out of here. Into the closet, and off to Speedy's, hopefully before the rum is all gone. For some reason, the Pirate Princess' bottle is already empty. See you soon, Speedy!

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Fun Times With Blog Buddies

Some of you already know this from FB, but on Sunday I went to the Pet Rock Festival in Worcester, Ma. It's a fundraising/awareness raising event for animal groups. Hundreds of people bring their pets, mostly dogs. There is music, and police and Frisbee dog demonstrations. My reason for going, though, was to meet Mr. Mick's Mom. Jade was at the House Rabbit Connection booth, and we were able to meet in the flesh for the first time ever! Finally!

I did watch the Frisbee dogs. They were having a tough time, because there was a strong, and gusty wind blowing. They still managed to be amazing, though.

I wish the rest of our bunny friends could have been there. With Brandi around, I'm sure we would have been able to take the place back over from the dogs! I guess at least the bunnies will be getting together soon, for Speedy's pirate party. I was doing a bunny picture for the LifeBook art class that I'm participating in this year, and decided to have Jensen try out the puffy shirt look. If you understand that reference, I know you are old, like me!

He looks pretty swashbuckling, don't you think? Now, to work on Buttercup's outfit....

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Happy Thump Day!

Hi, everybun! We were glad to see that everyone was so happy about our newly bonded bliss. We are happy, too. It was fun to hear from RG that our bowls match Zoe and Chico's bowls. That's a lot of bunny love to live up to, but we will do our best!

So today, Mom was trying to take my picture. But I said "No way, Mom! I'm not coming out of the box." See me showing her my best "Harrington" ears? With just a little more practice at it, I'll be ready for Bunnyville. I hear it's nicer there.

Anyway, not long after that, I heard something. The sound of a Big Goofball chewing!

So then I had to come out of the box. Wouldn't want to miss anything tasty, right?

But, I managed to get the best of Mom, after all. I didn't stand still for her to take my picture. I grabbed the hay and ran. Ha! Fooled her! Again. Honestly, it's not very hard.
Have a Happy Thump Day everybun. Remember, stay away from the drunk camels, and stick with us bunnies. We got it going on.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

We have Bondage!

"Jensen, that's not right!"

"I'm pretty sure that's what Mom said."

"No, you big goofball! Use those ears for something other than food! She said we are BONDED.  That means we like to snuggle (not that that is any of her business). Bondage is when she holds us tight to clip our nails. Not the same thing at all. That turns us 50 shades of disapproving!"

"You can say that again, Buttercup!"

"As you wish, Jensen."

So, the last time we talked, Jensen and Buttercup were still seeing life from opposing viewpoints. 

Now, however, they have decided to go through life side-by-side. (See Buttercups ears? She often holds them like this. Remind you of anybun?)

Buttercup has even started to push Jensen away from his food, which is not an easy thing to do!


 Jensen isn't quite sure what to make of this development.


Now that they are bonded, life has gotten much easier around here. Almost makes you want to take a nap....


But Jensen doesn't like things to be too easy. He prefers to keep us on our toes and guessing about what the heck he is doing. Still haven't figured this one out. What do you think he is thinking?

And by the way, I'm sending out  a big THANK YOU to all our friends who kept encouraging us during this bonding adventure. I might have given up a month ago if not for all of you. Thanks to you, these two buns are now very happy together!

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Tiny Quilts

How are you on follow through? I'm pretty bad at it, which makes me wonder why I started this new project. Starting with my birthday last June, I decided to make one tiny quilt each week for the next year. Not sure what the heck I was thinking, but I'm hoping for once to make it to the end of a project!

So this is the deal. These quilts are mounted on 6 inch canvases. I'm trying to use a lot of the mixed-media techniques that I've been learning (see my sideboard for the LifeBook class info.), so they all have collage, paint, some incorporate paper, and of course a wide variety of fabric. I'm also doing a lot of reading on Symbology, so I've been exploring personal symbols with these little bits, too.

This was the third TQ. There is a vague tarot reference with the diamonds here, and the acute triangles which are masquerading as swords. The rest is obvious.
 The latest finished TQ is below. It includes part of a handkerchief that I doodled on, and some fused bits of scrap thread.
 Here's a detail shot where you can see the threads.

This is an almost finished Work-In-Progress. That reddish square has some writing that I did on other piece of hankie. The writing is cryptic, as it goes in two different directions, one over the top of the other. Did not intend the blotchy effect, but the red marker bled, and I kept it because I liked it. I also did not intend the unibrow. I guess I need to plan ahead on the thread sketching if I'm doing people! It's all a learning process....

And finally, the very beginnings of a new piece. The next step is some paint, but I haven't made any decisions yet.

It looks like this is going to be a fun journey. I hope I make it all the way through to my 52nd birthday. Have you ever tried a year-long project? Or are you doing one now? What are you learning from it?

I enjoyed your comments on my last post. Brandi, I'm sheepishly admitting that you are right. I tried to hurry Jensen and Buttercup along too fast. Jade, he doesn't just take the greens off her plate. He rips them out of her mouth! Bit of a bully, my Jensen. And if you are on FB, you know he is having a bit of a stasis issue. We are not out of the woods yet, but he did "produce" a little. Poop is a wonderful thing!

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Break Down of Negotiations

Thanks for all the Jensen/Buttercup encouragement. I shot this picture early today.

Unfortunately, things broke down during the bonding session. I tried giving them their greens together. Let's just say, Jensen is a pig, and Buttercup is not putting up with it! Any advice? 

Friday, August 2, 2013

She Likes Him!

During Tuesday morning's bonding session, Buttercup groomed Jensen for the very first time! She repeated that yesterday, and then again today. Today's bonding session was inside, so that's a big step. We are getting there....

Thursday, July 25, 2013


Hi, everybun! I hope you have all been enjoying this hot as heck July. We have been spending all our time trying to stay cool. We only have enough air-conditioning for the bunnies, and we try not to run it at night, if we can help it. Most nights I have been giving them frozen water bottles to cuddle up to. Jensen and Buttercup took much longer than all our past buns to figure out what the bottles were about. Jensen got it first, and soon after that, Buttercup stopped thinking the bottle was going to eat her. Anyway, I thought you might get a laugh out of a picture I took of Jensen and the water bottles.

Don't you love those legs? (And yes, I'm embarrassed to admit this, but Buttercup does have a Princess food dish....)

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Let Freedom Ring!

It's not all about the fireworks and potato salad.

"The only sure bulwark of continuing liberty is a government strong enough to protect the interests of the people, and a people strong enough and well enough informed to maintain it's sovereign control over the government."
-Franklin D. Roosevelt


Monday, July 1, 2013

A Few Pictures From Today's Bonding Session

For the last few days, Buttercup and Jensen have been getting their greens together in the dining room. I scatter the veggies all around, so they can eat and still have a little distance between them. If it's going well, they stay in the room for up to an hour. Like everything with these two, it's a slow process.

Another cute view. Maybe their best sides?

Buttercup shows how to properly tenderize greens before you eat them.

Buttercup  fashions a Jensen-style mustache from radicchio.  Her mustache matches her eyes. Maybe she is mocking him?

Jensen says, "What? I don't get it."

Other than when they are going for car rides, this is as close as they have ever come to snuggling. It didn't last long, but it's progress!

Who knows, maybe they'll bond soon....

Friday, June 28, 2013

Uuughh! Sorry!

Hi, everybun! It's been quite a while. I hope all our blog friends are doing well out there, bun and bean alike. We are still working on bonding Jensen and Buttercup, but getting closer (fingers crossed). Thank you to everyone for the birthday wishes. I really appreciated them.

Sorry about leaving you hanging with the last three pictures that I posted. Didn't mean to, but "stuff", as they say, happens. So, now I'll tell you what that was all about.

Some of you who have been reading this blog for awhile may remember that on my last birthday, I went zip lining. This year, I decided on a more tame adventure. I went to visit a place that bills itself as America's Stonehenge. This is a tourist attraction left over from the early part of the last century and, as was typical of the time, it was romanticized and overstated. I knew that before  going, but I had wanted to visit for a long time, and figured it would be a good place to take pictures.

It was a beautiful morning to be out exploring the New England woods, and "Stonehenge" did not disappoint. Here are some more pictures.


The picture below shows a crew filming a "debunking" video. It was fun to watch the goings on, and listen to what they had to say.

You can walk into some of the tunnels and caves. I get a bit claustrophobic, and these are very small spaces. And I hate spiders. I know they are good. It's a visceral reaction. Can't help it. I went in to explore anyway. It's amazing how cool it stays in these spaces, even though they are very close to the surface of the ground.

Now, I am not an archaeologist. But over the years I have done a lot of reading about archeology, history, and geology. My conclusions? I think this started out as a natural geological formation. Maybe it was a tor-type thing or an area of karst topography,  or a combination. Then humans came along. First the Native Americans, then European settlers. I think people took advantage of the natural formations for shelter, and possibly for food storage. Over the years, they would alter the structures to suit their needs. The next group to come along would then rearrange things.
The stones are much, much smaller than the real Stonehenge, so would be more easily moved. The film crew was talking about the fact that no trash deposits have been found, but this is a very disturbed area. Farmers, and early "treasure hunters" might have destroyed or removed such areas, not realizing their value. Also, much is made by the owners of the fact that so many of the openings face the same way. They attribute this to (possibly) religious reasons. It seems more likely to me that openings were arranged to face away from the prevailing winter weather. And, the "doorways" are low enough to shelter the spaces from the summer sun. One of those traditional bits of building knowledge that has mostly been forgotten in these days of central heating and air conditioning!
Having said all that, this really is a great place to take pictures. And it certainly is much more romantic to imagine some larger purpose, some mysterious ancient civilization. What would you like to believe?
The trails through the site end near several alpaca that the owners have on-site, with wool and fleece for sale. They are such goofy-looking creatures! And so, we have reached The End.
Have a great weekend!