Friday, April 30, 2010

Ugh! My not-so happy family.

We are all sick! Lydia didn't sleep well for 2 nights early last week. I think she was fighting a bug because soon after PJ and I both came down with awful colds. Lydia had a CT scan last Friday to check out an unrelated concern. It showed she had a sinus infection and she got a really smelly gloppy antibiotic. PJ and I eventually hit that point where we had fought it on our own for too long and went and got antibiotics. PJ had developed bronchitis and double ear infections by then so we are still both exhausted and the house is a mess. We are definitely in survival mode and looking forward to having our heads clear again. While we are waiting to be a normal functioning family again, let me introduce you to the recycled family that one of my classes made for Earth Day.
I thought they would make one figure out of recycled materials and just divide up the work so a few kids made each limb and we put it all together. They got more ambitious than I was and decided to make an entire family. 8 students worked on each and I really let them do whatever they wanted as long as the proportions were correct and it held together. They were LOUD while working, but really impressed me. These are first year high school art students, and many are only here to get their credit and move on. These survived 2 car rides and entire day on display at the local Earth Day Festival and are still together. Good work 3rd period!

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Easter Wrap Up

Somehow I got busy, don't know HOW that could have happened, and never posted any pictures from Easter Day at our house. We have the whole family up for lunch and usually hunt eggs. This is the first year Lydia participated.
By participated, I mean that she owed a basket to collect eggs.
And she carried her basket across our lawn, which at that point was all grass seed and hay.
She carried her basket all the way to the swing set, where she stayed until we were through with all our silly egg hunting.
Lydia did join in for the first annual Burchett family wheel barrow races. What? You don't have a family wheel barrow race after eating large quantities of ham and jelly beans on Easter? You really must try it! There is a video posted on Facebook if you haven't seen it yet, it's pretty funny.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

The Hay House

I never got to show any of these pictures of what PJ made with hay bales. He bought a huge amount of hay and grass seed and fertilizer and top soil before Easter to spiffy up the lawn. We have had a lot of dirt moved around this year, so there was a lot of red mud that needed to be dealt with. This seemed like overkill in the hay bale department to me, but we now have a yard full of new grass so what do I know. In addition to knowing how to get grass to grow, PJ is also really sweet and piled up the hay to make a fort for Lydia to climb in and on. There were doorways and tunnels, dark spooky areas and large open areas. Needless to say it made me nervous but she LOVED every minute of it.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Shhh. Don't tell Lydia!

So, I bit the bullet and bought a tea set. As mentioned in my last post, the ceramic set that I am making will be too fragile to actually play with. Besides, only time will tell if it survives the kiln and becomes a real tea set. Mostly, I like making something for Lydia's gifts, but I still want her to have a tea set to play with. I decided it needs to be sturdy and I liked the idea of it being Alice in Wonderlandish. So I found this vintage Plasco (as in plastic) Alive in Wonderland tea set on Ebay. It looks like a normal pretty tea set with pink flowers, but close up, you can see the characters impressed into the plastic. I think it is small, like child size, miniature, super small.
Hopefully, the diminutive size will be charming, not disappointing. I would like to be done searching for the perfect tea set. It's time for me to obsess about other things in my life, like the marathon I am running this weekend, that I am not trained for, or Lydia's CT scan on Friday. Hmmm. On second thought, tea set shopping sounds like much more fun!

Friday, April 16, 2010

2 Teacups

Every now and again, my students will be in the middle of a project, my papers are graded, and I am able to pull out some art materials and make something. My kids are always amazed that their art teacher actually MAKES stuff. I suppose their other teachers don't often get to show their skills, but I remember my art teacher making stuff in class too and was inspired by it. Last month I got an idea for an Alice in Wonderland themed tea set. I have been looking for a play tea set to get Lydia for her birthday and either don't like or LOVE but can't afford what I am finding. SO this elaborate idea popped into my head and I am about finished with the first part, 2 tea cups.

One is from the mysterious garden where Alice meets the Caterpillar and the talking flowers.

The handle is a vine and there was just enough room on the cup to include the garden door.

The second tea cup has the Mad Hatter's hat caught on a branch.

Sitting on a different branch is the Cheshire Cat. This cup just went into the ceramics kiln. Hopefully there aren't any explosions (sometimes air bubbles are in the clay and they expand in the heat) and I will be able to paint the cups next week. Keep your finger's crossed!

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Tea Party ideas for Thursday

Did you know there was a red headed illustration of Alice in Wonderland? I adore the pen and ink illustrations by Sir John Tenniel and plan to use them for most of Lydia's Tea Party Birthday imagery. However, I was so excited to stumble on these color illustrations by Mabel Attwell in the early 1900's.

Apparently, the British copywrite for the story expired in 1907 and so there was a flood of new versions with divergent illustrations on the market around the turn of the century. I found these images on a website that actually retells the Alice story, chapter by chapter, but with illustrations by several artists for the same scene. Here are a few more of my favorites.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Easter Egg Hunt

Saturday was the big egg hunt at church. Lydia doesn't really get the egg hunting thing yet, so she mostly ran around and ignored the eggs. She looked awful cute in her bunny ears and bunny shirt though.

She did find a few eggs. She even managed to get a few in her basket.But then she would stand up and the eggs would fall out and she would move on to something else.In the end, she decided it was more fun to lay in the grass and imitate me taking pictures from my low vantage point. She doesn't get egg hunts, but she does get photographic composition? I'll settle for that!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Some Bunny Loves Me!

Here are a few more of Lydia's Easter pictures. These all feature the bunny that I rescued from Goodwill and dressed up in a vest and tie. Looks like she is enjoying him. Here's hoping you have some bunny to love on this weekend.