Wintery thoughts

My glasses are found at the grocery store. I finally was able to get into the College Board website and finally, finally registered K for a specialty SAT in French for January. Made the amazing cake Hazelnut/chocolate torte (made with pecans though...and it totally works) last night, iced it this morning. Made a half a flap hat...and tried it on (while it was still on the needles) and found that it might fit an ogre and not a normal person or teenager. So, I ripped it out to the earflaps and have it back to where it was, 2.5" less wide overall. These hats are crankable (created the pattern from a hat A. has) with nicer finish work...maybe tassels?

K was over at her friends, the identical triplets house for the snow in and then overnight. It was very fun for her as the stove of the house had a "sabbath" mode for folks to set so as not to allow them to cook over the sabbath. Apparently, someone had set the stove for sabbath, so there was no cooking until they could get a hold of a customer service person who happened to be snowed in (like most of the poeple I called yesterday). So, they cranked up the woodstove and cooked and heated on the stove. Then off to the fields with the dogs and their imaginations where they made up ideas and talked about them as a group (these are high school seniors and juniors, mind you!). Then back to the house for pyjamas and chick flicks. This morning, when R went to pick K up, there was the beaming (he always shines...its just his glowy personality) dad, with a two man sleigh (rough and ready...a working sleigh) hitched up to a very shaggy caramel horse with bells. No, not colonial Williamsburg, not a Christmas Card, just more farm tools with tremendous style. Just hearing this made my day. It was a Jan Brett moment. The Jan Brett books are so holiday with their tales and pictures of trolls in trouble, or Norwiegan imps and christmas makers with twined branches and porcupines, red wrapping paper and ribbons, handmade presents like mittens and hats--she inspires the best of the holidays (I love her books...sometimes her drawing can be a tad rocky...but cant it be for all of us!). I googled Brett to find out a lot about her inspiration and ideas for books--but on a personal note Scholastic tells us:

"When I was I child, I decided to be an illustrator. I spent many hours reading and drawing. I remember the special quiet of rainy days, when I felt that I could enter the pages of beautiful picture books. Now I try to re-create that feeling of believing that the imaginary place I'm drawing really exists. The detail in my work helps to convince me, and I hope others as well, that such places might be real.

As a student at the Museum School in Boston, I spent hours in the Museum of Fine Arts. It was overwhelming to see room-size landscapes and towering stone sculptures, and then moments later to refocus on delicately embroidered kimonos and ancient porcelain. I'm delighted and surprised when fragments of these beautiful images come back to me in my painting.

Illustrating children's books always seems like a big adventure because as an artist I must explore and give thought to my subject — an artist needs to know everything about their subject. I try to get a feel for the country and times my characters live in, and I get many ideas from traveling to different countries, where I research the architecture and costumes that appear in my work. After a trip to Norway, I was inspired to write three books! I've found that the details and the odd little things one notices help make a story convincing. In my mind, the story comes alive. And for me, the best part about telling a story is drawing the pictures.

Jan Brett lives in a seacoast town in Massachusetts with her husband, who is a member of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, and Buffy, her pet hedgehog. To find out more about Jan Brett, visit her Web site. Meet some of her charming characters, and enjoy all her wonderful online and offline activities."

and the snow continues to fall.

R. just came back with my specs and a Christmas tree for his parents (who live with us in an apartment within the house). They are entertaining and being entertained during the holiday, so it just seemed like the right thing to do. R. is busy thinking about design ideas to move the rennovation further next summer with this house which should be great... and we huddle next to the cricket (our tiny log wood Jotul stove previously mentioned Feb 2008). That little baby can crank some btus and with the rooms of this big house (the one's not closed for the winter) it can be a bit breezy that layers and hats are def in order. I even have fingerless gloves (very stylish) that I have made to help keep in the heat.

Must go clean off the dining room table (from last week's deluge) and prep for the prepping of the suitcases.

More later.