Tuesday, February 22, 2011

New Reflections

I have always loved participating in swaps because they are a help in the learning curve.  No, these Reflections Pendants are not new, but they helped me to 'refine'  the technique to something that was akin to production, which I do not like to do.  The swap required a minimum of eighteen pendants and so I did make the required number and had a bit more of the material prepared, so I made extra ones which I am going to give as gifts to friends. 

The colors in these are quite subdued, not the normal showy stuff that I do in the fish mobiles.  Also, I did not sand the finished pendants, leaving the option to the members of the guild to decide whether they wanted them shiny or not. I just buffed them a little on the surface, rather than the usual sanding with progressive grits of sandpaper and buffing to a high gloss.  I like the subtle sheen  and it is enough to make the 'reflection' part of the pendant noticeable.  Some of the burl effect even looks like a goddess in some of the pendants. 

As usual, I was under the 'gun' to get them done, as my days are very busy with visiting and participating in a couple of activities here under the sun.  Having made these many times before, I was able to streamline the activity which is one of the advantages of participating in a swap.  For the last ones I made as keepers, I completed those after last Saturday's meeting and do have to admit that I added a little more embellishment. In some,  I hammered out some wire and placed it in the underlayer of burnished black.  In others, I rolled the 'bail' part around a tube of metal to make it a little more mixed media.  Of course no two are exactly alike, which I love.

The past few days have been cool and there was a lot of rain over the weekend. However yesterday was sunnier (but cool) and I finally tried using the UV curing magic glos that I have had for over a year.  It's funny, sometimes I get stuff and have to use it right away.  This product was one that I was saving on the back burner.  I used the glos on a book cover and although the book is not completely done, I think I am going to continue using the medium.  It is VERY shiny!

I guess it's a toss up as to whether my personal preferences are for shiny, matte, or high gloss.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

My dog Mollypup

Our little Molly has been mollygagging lately.  She love, love, loves to sleep in strange positions and her being the Princess Malllahkowalla that she is, we allow her to do just about anything she wants.  Besides doing a grasse matinée chaque matin, she loves to droop her head over the lazy boy.  There's a misnomer...They should have called the easy chairs LazyGirls.

We averted a near crisis last week with the help of our vet and his assistants back home, Centennial Animal Hospital.  It turns out that the insulin that Molly takes is NOT available here, or anywhere in the U.S. so to avoid Molly having to get re-regulated on a different strain and dosage, we had to have the type she is taking sent special delivery so she wouldn't run out.  It originally took over three months to get the correct dosage of insulin regulated (and how many trips to the vet) and we did not want to go that route again.  We had tried contacting several people who we know were coming down here, but none of them would have been here before her supply ran out. 

Originally our vet believed that the same type of insulin was available here, but it seems there was some problem with the porcine insulin coming out of suspension  in a rather short period (less than six months) so it has been taken off the production line here. All is well now, and the little girl is as normal as can be expected.  She is blind due to cataracts, but at least her drinking and evacuating is under control, leading us to believe that the insulin levels are correct.  It's not like we can do a little strip test everyday...

Our girl, who is eleven plus, still greets guests at the door and can do all her 'tricks' but she does bump into a few things from time to time.  She has learned to adapt pretty well though...she uses her nose as a 'white cane' and tests the base of the chair or sofa with her nose before jumping up on her favourite perch.  Outside, I keep her on a pretty tight rein because there are lots of 'big rocks' that could get into her path and I don't want her to hurt herself.  It's funny, as she can sense when people are walking by, and once in a while I think she 'sees'.  A bird flew by the other day and she seemed to follow it... but as for 'looking' at things, it's pretty bad.

I think we are pretty fortunate to still have her, as she is as lovable as ever.  I think I'll buy her a special valentine this year...

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Super Bowl Sunday - The Cheeseheads

Well, I know this is not polymer clay, but if I had to make some funny cheeseheads from clay maybe this is what they would have looked like.  Actually, these are funny looking hors-d'oeuvres I am serving today during the Big Game...I am not biased, but just because we have folks who live in Wisconsin, I thought I'd better do up a dish in their favor.  I am going to serve Sloppy Joes at half time and calling them Pitts Burgers (no they haven't been warmed under the arm, lol) so that will make both teams even.

These little cheeseheads were simple to make and I used the leftover cuttings as wel,l just as I use all my leftovers from polymer clay.  None of them go to waste...these will go to waist.  The base for the heads were cut from lavosh bread I bought at Trader Joe's yesterday.  I cut the pointed head shapes from two  large rectangles of lavosh and saved the trimmings.  I heated those trimmings up to make little crackers. 

To cut the cheese rounds, I used the rinsed out can from the olives to make perfect circles out of cheese slices.  I used it as a cutter just like I use circular cutters for my polymer clay.  After slicing up a few black olive for the eyes, a couple of shrimp for noses and some pieces of a red pepper for the mouths, I was done.  I was laughing all the time I was making the little faces and I imagine it would be a cute project for moms to do with their kids for parties.  They do look a little on the gruesome side, but they're still  fun.    I already put them in at 400 degrees (baking not broiling) just to secure the cheese to the bread, and later on they'll just be reheated so I don't have to miss any of the game.

Go Packers Go!