Monday, August 31, 2009

I've been painting and painting and painting...

and painting.....for 1  1/2 weeks. 
This is a large mural (55" x 91") I will put up in school outside of my classroom to welcome the kids back to (gulp) school.
Every year I pick a movie that is popular in the summer, and make a poster using it's theme, and then change it up. I've been doing this for more years than I care to think about! (Home Alone was my first one....)

This one's based on the kids movie "G-Force". Apparently it's about some Gerbils that are planning to save the world or something. 

Don't know. Didn't see it.

I just hope it's not R rated by some sadistic, wicked twist of fate. I probably should check that.

But it's back to the drawing board tomorrow......sob.....

Hey, teachers like summer vacation, too! ... and it's all over after today. sob. sob. sob.

It's noon and I'm still in my P.J.s watching Paula Deen add a stick of butter to something.

Wish me luck!!


Thursday, August 27, 2009

End of summer day trip...

Can one be a tourist if they are not 'from away'? According to the dictionary....
(1 : one that makes a tour for pleasure or culture)......YES YOU CAN!   So we did.....

Living in Maine is picturesque no matter what you do. But there are some places that are so beautiful, I almost feel like I see it for the first time, even after the jakillionith time.

The other gorgeous day we took a day trip to Ogunquit, Maine. Drive up or down route one, turn toward the ocean in the center of Ogunquit and head to Perkins Cove.

Parking is limited IN Perkins Cove, although you can try. It's $3 an hour there. Or you can do what we did and park in a gravel parking lot just before the entrance to Perkins Cove. It cost $8 for as long as you want. You can walk anywhere from there, to the Cove or back onto the main street.

Here is my personal travelogue.....I hope you enjoy it. Come to Maine!!

Welcoming sign to Perkins Cove.

The first restaurant you see entering the Cove itself is Barnacle Billys. Great seafood. They do have valet parking. I do believe that is the actual valet hunk standing there under the 'brella.

This is the second Barnacle Billys food place. Tables for their ice cream service. Both restaurants are right on the Kennebunk River. This river is heading into the ocean, which is right there. The river part of the Cove is what creates the harbor.

Some of the boats in the river. NOTE THE LITTLE BRIDGE IN THE BACK. (click on photo to englarge.)

This is the view from up on that little foot bridge. But, what to do when this sailboat wants to go under it?? The bridge is NOT taller than that mast. Problem.

Well, not really a problem if someone notices you. You see, it's a do it yourself draw bridge. Except you can't do it yourself  if you are actually on the sailboat. You have to count on the good graces of someone standing on or near to bridge to go up there and push a button!!!!

This guy was the self appointed button pusher designee. He was so excited to do it he was talking about quitting his day job! The sailboat cruised through unscathed.
I guess if you're a practical joker, you could possibly walk away at this point, separating families from each other forever that have become stuck on either side of the bridge.
But, having a heart, this bridge operator pushed the button again and let the bridge down.

One way folks get around from all the hotels and resorts is by trolley for $1.50. You can go up and down the main street, to the Cove or to the large sandy beach on the other side of an inlet.

This is a view of a street in the Cove area.
There are lots of food establishments. We chose this one situated right on the water. It was called Jackie's Too.

All the tables right on the water's edge were full, so we were one row in. After we sat down for 5 minutes, a table right next to us became vacant. But it was OK, we were close enough.

I splurged on a Lobster Roll. ($14.95)

After lunch we decided to stroll down Marginal Way, an absolutely gorgeous walkway along the ocean's edge between Perkins Cove and downtown Ogunquit.

It's a well maintained path meandering along the Atlantic.

The waves have calmed considerably from 2 days before, when Hurricane Bill rolled through.

There are many benches along the way to rest and contemplate.

Check out the little rock sculptures would be artists create along the way. (Click on pic to enlarge...)
The Patriot's Day Storm in April, 2007, did a lot of destruction in Maine. (Ask ME, lost everything in the cellar and insurance wouldn't cover the supposed 'flood'....but that's another story.) (We are NOT in a flood zone and on a hill. It still was deemed a flood...) (Not that I'm still pissed about it or anything.....grrrrrr....)  (Know your insurance policy!) Anywho.....

Enlarge this photo....people sunning themselves on the nice, soft rocks.
A lot of improvements were made after the 2007 storm, such as these stairs to the water and nice, level areas made for all the benches, etc. 

Marginal way comes out behind several resorts, and onto the main drag. A quick walk up to route one presents you with lots of shops and restaurants.

We strolled into this place....

And got this.
This is 3 Muskateers icecream. Seems like coffee icecream with big chunks of chocolate and some syrup that looks like motor oil mixed in.

A wonderful, wonderful day.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Sneak preview.....

THIS is what I've been busy working one. It's only half finished, but the eyes are 95 percent complete.....(I see some minor adjustments I need to make....)

So, that's what I've been up to recently.....I will post the rest when it's done.

Have a great weekend everyone.  Off to see the Moody Blues in concert tonight!!!!

UPDATE: It's 12:56AM.  Got home from the concert about 15 minutes ago. It was absolutely wonderful. I ADORE the Moody Blues. And the venue: Meadowbrook Pavilion in New Hampshire is first rate. A great night.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Finding stuff on the beach.....

When I lived in New Jersey, we used to go 'down the shore'.
In Maine, you go to the 'beach'.

In New Jersey, we used to actually go INTO the water. And like it.
In Maine, I myself, barely put my piggies in.
The water is colder than a witches you know what, even in July and August. 

But it's still very nice. No boardwalks or shops or 50 million people trying to find their little piece of real estate for their blanket. And Birdman (Mr. Downeastdoingstuff) reminded me that these beaches are FREE. He was shocked when we would go down the shore in New Jersey, have to pay AND wear a badge all day! Downright shocked.

Check it out.

You look to the left....
....and you see Spring Point Lighthouse......
Look to the right........
....and you see Portland Headlight.

But, I myself, don't go into the water. Well, maybe up to my ankles, for 30 seconds. If it's especially hot out.
I don't need a lifeguard.

So in Maine, when you go to the beach, you:
1. Look around at the absolutely beautiful scenery.
2. Read.
3. Nap.
4. Eat munchies.
5. Take a walk.

When I take a walk, or I see folks taking a walk, I know that one of the main jobs of walkers is to pick stuff up off of the sand. Unless you are moving at a high rate of speed, ie. joggers, or have your arms glued around a significant other, ie. new love, your job is to pick stuff up, scrutinize it and then put it into your pocket, if you have one, or into a bag.

I carry a Hannaford  bag.

Putting stuff in my pockets make me look fat, so I carry a bag.

So these bags make it home and into the garage. I have bags of shells, rocks and driftwood.

Sometimes I even make stuff out of the stuff.  Sometimes the stuff just stays in the garage for years.

Here are some fish I made of driftwood....yeah......for no reason at all that I can think of.

At one time I collected rocks that had 'lines' in them. I put them into a basket. For no reason.
I think I've picked up all the rocks in the world that have lines on them because I haven't found any more in a couple of years.
Then, for no apparent reason, I wrapped rope or string around rocks that have lines in them to accentuate the lines.
Jute was used here.

This one I should be committed for. I used THREAD! No easy task, using a toothpick and Elmers glue to place the threads. I was taken by the rose and mossy colors in the natural rock and I had to enhance those colors with thread. I had to.

I just felt it was my job to do this.

Who else would have done this?

So I did.

I waste a lot of time.

Oh, yeah. That photo of the plane at the beginning of this post... it's real. See for yourself.
(Maho Bay Beach, St. Maarten)

Monday, August 10, 2009

On the road again....

I have just finished another pastel in my road series. Here is the finished version. Below that, you can see the progression. I think it's pretty much self-explanatory. If not, you may comment any questions below. Thanks for looking!

And, Voila!
See previous Road Pix here.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Pesto....a little healthified...

FINALLY I have something from my garden!!! With 4,000 days of rain, it did a job on everything growing around here. You would think rain would be good....but not gallons at a time. 
Anyway, I went up to prune my basil back today and took the clippings and made pesto. I love pesto. But I have to de-salt things, so I did the best I could.

Here's the basil, washed and in the food processor. Recipe calls for 3 handfuls. (very precise)
I had 4 1/2 handfuls, so I used it all.

Then add 3 tsps. minced garlic.

Turn on the 30 year old processor and pulverize the contents.

Then add 2 handfuls of walnuts.
The recipe then calls for 1/2 to 3/4 C Parmesan Cheese. Here is where the salt is, so I only put in 1/4 C AND I used low-fat Parmesan Cheese.
Pulverize again.
Now drizzle 1/4 C of extra virgin olive oil SLOWLY into the bowl while processing.
Voila! Pesto.
This is how much it made. 

BTW, I am not happy with the Dannon yogurt company. I eat a coffee yogurt for lunch EVERYDAY, and I do mean, every day, (ask Birdman) and I have for over 25 years. For some reason they decided not to put the plastic covers onto the yogurts anymore. They just use a heavy duty foil instead. BUT now I have no covers to use to cover stuff like this. 

I don't know what they were thinking.

PESTO,  with healthier version notes.
-Fill processor with 3 good handfuls of basil.
-Add 3 tsp. minced garlic. Process.
-Add 2 handfuls of walnuts. (or Pine Nuts)
-Salt and Pepper to taste. (I only put pepper in)
-1/2 to 3/4 C grated Parmesan Cheese. (I used low-fat and I only used 1/4C)
-1/4 C plus 1/8 C oil ( I used 1/4 C Extra Virgin Olive Oil)
Slowly pour the oil into the processor while it's processing.

Toss with any cooked pasta. I like it on bow-tie pasta, or thin spaghetti.
Or use on a pizza instead of pizza sauce.

I hope you enjoy it.