Monday, September 30, 2013

Freestyle Paintings

I loved how these turned out. And they were so much fun too.

I hate wasting paint, but with kids and acrylics, it's hard to avoid too much paint on their pallets. 
So we have to come up with ways to use the leftovers.  In the past, we've painted a thrifted Beethoven bust, a chair, and thrifted stretched canvas. 

The rules: No new paint. Only leftover paint and geometric shapes.

I gessoed the boards first. (We painted on cardboard scavenged from one of my school's recycling. These are 22 1/2x 28 1/2- the boxes that were used to ship railroad board.)

I started each with a shape in a corner- part of a circle or a rectangle, etc. and asked the artists to build on that. As they finished painting their paper mache, they could come work on the group paintings, adding shapes, layering colors and patterns.
Once the paintings were complete- once we'd used up all the leftover paint, I added the black-with-white or white-with-black outlining of their colorful shapes.

Right now, these are hung up on my bulletin board space, holding the spot for a few weeks until we have newArt Club work from this fall to replace them.

Make it a Wonderful Day!

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Quinoa Garden Salad

 A few years ago, I went to a cooking class at Ashley's house. She's an awesome cook, and she introduced me to quinoa. You know, the ancient, high protein grain raised high in the Andes?  The one with the funny name that looks like it should be pronounced "Key-No-Ah"? But you probably already know that it's "Keen-Wah", right?

Here is my rendition of Ashely's salad. This is the perfect time of year to enjoy this- fresh corn, zucchini, carrots, kale, red pepper, or what ever you've grown or picked up fresh at the farmer's market. Add the lime and cumin dressing and you're good to go. Colorful, healthy, easy to make ahead of time. Yum.

(Thrifted bowl and placemat, Value Village)

Quinoa Garden Salad

1 C. Quinoa
Pinch of Sea Salt
1 3/4 C. Water
1 or 2 Cans Black Beans, rinsed and drained
Corn- Grilled, Cut from 2-3 large ears (but leave in big chunks)
3 large Carrots, julienned
1 large Red Pepper, chopped
2/3 Cup chopped fresh Cilantro
Kale-3 leaves with stem removed, finely chopped
1 small Zucchini, chopped
1/2 medium Red Onion, chopped (or use green onions)
1 (6-ounce) can Black Olives, halved (optional)

Note: You can add grilled or rotisserie chicken too for a non-vegetarian version

1/3 Cup Lime Juice, fresh squeezed
1 teaspoon Salt
1 1/4 teaspoons ground cumin
1 1/2 Tablespoons Red Wine Vinegar
1/3 Cup Olive Oil

Prepare Quinoa: In large bowl, wash quinoa by rinsing and draining at least five times until water is clear. (This removes a natural, bitter coating.) Place rinsed quinoa, salt, and water in pot. Bring to boil. Reduce heat and cover, simmering 15-20 minutes until water is absorbed.

Make Dressing: Whisk all ingredients together, except oil. And oil in slow stream, whisking to combine.

Make Salad: Add cooked, slightly cooled quinoa to other ingredients. Drizzle with dressing, toss well and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper. If made ahead, cover and refrigerate; bring to room temp to serve.

Make it a Wonderful Day!

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Bugs and Bowties

 This one's been around for a while, maybe 10 years. A pieced top and back, just hanging out with all my other unfinished quilt tops.  I finally finished it this summer.

(Bugs and Bowties, 59"x59")
 Yes, those are bugs. I thought the fabric was weird, and that's why I liked it... a strange green color and bugs. I don't remember where I bought it or who designed it, but I'm sure it was on sale. (Hmm, I wonder why..) :D


The back is black and deli-mustard yellow. Brighter than the photo makes it appear. More like cheddar cheese. Why did I pick cheddar? If you look closely, there's a bit of the yellow-orange in the print, along with the red. Iknow, I know, it's kinda strange.

My friend Terry did the long arm quilting.Big meandering for a flexible, soft, quilt.

Perfect for a picnic.

Make it a wonderful day!