Monday, September 26, 2011

bart +mollie

I recently did a photo shoot with my parents! We had so much fun taking these photos!  Here's a few of my favorites from the afternoon.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

block printing

I've really been wanting to create a piece of art to record our 1st home.  I've noticed a trend of watercolor paintings and sketches of homes, and still might create that too, but as for now I have a different idea.  I love printmaking, and decided to create a series of barn prints!
If you want to give this project a try at home all you will need is:

block-printing ink( I recommend using water-soluble if you are doing it at home)
 *speedball gouge set ( about $8)
*block printing linoleum
*wooden spoon
*rubber brayer (about $5)


1.I printed out a black and white high contrast photo of our house. * this is different than grayscale. You should ONLY have black and white values in your photo.
2.I then did a graphite transfer to loosely transfer the image onto the linoleum.
3. Start carving, carve out everything that is white in the picture, everything black, you leave raised.

4. Ink up your brayer- it takes very little ink- too much ink will sink into the carved areas.
5. Evenly roll your printing block
6. Place paper on top of block and use wooden spoon to rub the back of the paper evenly, you want to transfer most of the ink so that your ink looks solid.
7. pull paper slightly up at one corner to check for ink transfer, rub more if needed and then remove!

red velvet brownies

These red velvet brownies are my new obsession and of course are another pinterest find! I've posted the recipe below, but I actually altered the original recipe that called for 2ounces of red food coloring and I only used 1/2 an ounce when I made them.  These brownies were still very red- just with a little less artificial coloring.  Red velvet a slightly more natural way?

For the brownies:
3 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
1oz red food coloring ( works well with 1/2 ounce)
2 tsp pure vanilla extract, divided
1/2 cup (8 tbsp) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
2 large eggs, at room temperature
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt

To make the brownies:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Butter and flour an 8″x8″ baking pan.
In a small bowl, slowly stir together the cocoa powder, food coloring, and 1 tsp vanilla into a thick paste. Set aside.
In the bowl ,beat together the butter and sugar on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes.  Add eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition, then stir in the remaining 1 tsp of vanilla. Add in the cocoa mixture and beat the two mixtures together until they are one uniform color.  Slowly add in the flour and salt and mix on medium-low speed, just until combined.  Do not overmix.
Remove the bowl from the mixer and stir up the batter with a rubber spatula once or twice just to ensure all of the flour has incorporated from the sides of the bowl and there isn’t anything stuck on the bottom of the bowl.  You’ll want one uniformly colored (red) batter.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 30-40 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean when inserted into the center of the brownies.  Allow brownies to completely cool in the pan on a baking rack, about 45-60 minutes.  

You can either top these with cream cheese icing, icecream or both!

Thursday, September 1, 2011


These robots were created by my 3rd grade students.  They are so inventive and I loved listening to them explain all the details of their robots to me.

I'm so glad they included a robot dog.

this robot tutors other students.

yes. that is a ninja-bot
and this robot bakes cakes.


If you can't tell, my new elementary students are blowing me away with their drawings! 4th and 5th grade started the year creating contour line drawings of their shoes.  This is what I did at the beginning of the semester with my high school students and was a little concerned with how these kids would handle it.  They LOVED it and couldn't wait to see if their shoe was hanging around the school.  We practiced DRAWING WHAT YOU SEE AND NOT WHAT YOU KNOW.  This was a challenging project, but everyone left class that week with a little more confidence in themselves and their drawing abilities.