Archive for October, 2010

Here for your Halloween enjoyment is a little book from my collection. Literally  little; this puppy measures 4-1/8″ x 6-1/8″. It fits very nicely in the hand.

Nutshell Toy Making dustjacket

I picked this up because I really liked how demented the animals on the cover look.

Nutshell Toy Making dustjacket flaps

This book was published in 1964 in England which is kind of obvious if you read the dustjacket flaps and do check out the other titles in the series (listed on the back of the dustjacket).

This clown pattern looks more scarecrow to me so here it is and if you don’t get it made before Thanksgiving it will still fit into your tablescape. It’s meant to be made of felt with a cardstock banjo.

Nutshell Toy Making Clown pattern 1

Nutshell Toy Making Clown pattern 2

Nutshell Toy Making Clown pattern 3

Nutshell Toy Making Clown pattern 4

Remember to click on the picture to get the full size image to copy and print out. Enjoy!


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Every morning when I wake up, this is what I see:

yellow doll dresser

It’s a vintage dolls’ dresser that I’ve had for years. When I got it the mirror was missing from the swivel frame on the top and I never replaced it; it sat empty for a long, long time. Then my friend Elsa Mora blogged about a painting called Alert that she had done for an exhibit of her art. I knew right away where I needed to put a copy of that painting and with Elsa’s permission I printed it out and then the dresser finally was complete.

yellow doll dresser detail

This reminds me every day to stay awake, pay attention, appreciate what I have and let go what I have lost. There is great wisdom and no small amount of comfort in this piece.

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My Vacation Adventure

First day of our annual vacation and we’d had a delicious brunch at the 45th Parallel (best breakfast spot ever); moved our car to our favorite shady parking spot and I’d taken a snap of our favorite vacation visual.

This waterwheel, which we love and as a bonus it makes a delightful chuggy, chuggy sound as it turns.

Then I did a braindead thing: I tripped, couldn’t catch my balance (damn you, infernal inner ear disease) and took an ugly fall, smacked down hard on the asphalt, rolled onto my back and just lay there hoping no one in a giant SUV was heading down the marina drive at that exact moment on account of that’s where I happened to be sprawled out.

Here’s the adventure part: I now know exactly where the hospital in Traverse City is. My right knee had a rather alarming and totally freaky bloop sticking out of one side so John fetched the car and off we went down the road to the emergency room so I could get an x-ray. The upside is that because we were on vacation the hospital was only 15 miles away and we were only at the hospital for 3 hours. At home the hospital is 40 miles away and the wait time to see a doctor would probably have been at least 3 hours.

The final result is that I didn’t break or tear anything and my knee will (eventually) heal on it’s own. The freaky bloop is still there (but smaller) and I’m still limping a bit (especially on stairs or steps). I also kinda messed up my right hand but it’s getting less painful and stiff and I can actually grip things this week. Most of the bruises are at least starting to fade and the scrapes are healing up.

We didn’t let this ruin our vacation. although we had to eliminate a couple of activities and it reduced our strolling speed to a gimpy crawl. We still had a really good relaxing time. As a karmic payback the weather was unseasonably and unexpectedly warm — really perfect actually.

More good news, I did manage to partially twist so I didn’t land directly on my face (face missed out on injury all together) and I did automatically jettison the skull bag at exactly the right moment so that the camera inside it did not sustain any damage (luckily neither did the bag). I’m only pissed that I didn’t manage to compensate enough to avoid anything more than scrapes and slight bruises. In case this whole paragraph sounds a little odd: I went through some training as a child to automatically react in certain patterns when in a falling-down situation so as to minimize injury (I think it’s still a first year requirement at Hoggwarts or maybe that was Jedi school — Ha!).

Next week: back to regular (ghastly thought; I almost typed normal) blog activities.

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Brownie Puppeteer

Beauregard Hawthorne and his Amazing Puppet. 16 inches.

This piece was a lot of fun. My idea was to play with the juxtaposition of a happy, friendly, smiling brownie with a grumpy, abrasive, possibly hostile Beetle puppet.

In this three-quarters view you can see that Beau is standing with his weight on his left leg and is starting to take a step with his right. You can also get a better view of the puppets wings and the way they come out from under a back yoke on his body.

Love, love, love the contrast between these two faces. The puppet head has an actual functional Muppet mouth and Beau’s hand is really inside. The beetles eyebrow/feelers are wired to hold their position and have a rich velvety texture.

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