Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Molly Bee's Big Door County Adventure

I went to Door County last week to attend a couple of shows at Northern Sky Theater in Peninsula State Park. I went alone as a gift to myself-some down time to explore and reflect, and of course see Doug Mancheski in 'Lumberjacks in Love' and 'No Bones About It'.

I stayed in Egg Harbor and the view from my room was stunning. You can't really tell from the pics but it's on the top of a high cliff. The terns were flying below my balcony at times!

To the left

Straight ahead

To the right.  Yep! not a bad seat in the house. I spent an hour before I had to get ready to go sitting out here and just watching Lake Michigan. Bliss

The plays were so good! Really funny musicals. I felt bad for Doug and the other actors because it was so hot and humid and they all had on long-sleeved, flannel costumes and were dancing and running around.  I got to visit with Doug between shows. He is a kind, gentle, intelligent, soft-spoken guy off the stage. On the stage, he is such a goof. I love a man who can make me laugh! Actually, I'm glad I got to see 'No Bones About It' because he didn't have as 'wacky' a part as he does in 'Guys On Ice' and 'Lumberjacks in Love'. The boy gots skillz in the acting, singing, dancing department!

The venue is a small amphitheater nestled in the woods right in the park. During the course of two plays, the sun set and the moon rose in the pine-scented air; absolutely breathtaking. It reminded me so much of home I could have cried. The whole experience was pure magic. 

I toured up one side of the peninsula and down the other the next day. In Sister Bay, there is a restaurant (Al Johnson's) with a sod roof and goats to keep it mowed. They are wicked happy up there. My 'all purpose animal calling' protocol (consisting of making smoochie sounds, scooching down, holding out my hand and crooning, 'Come here, Punkin') didn't work at all.

I was standing along on a boat ramp in a deserted park when this guy zipped by me and straight into the lake. I couldn't decide if it was just that hot, or if there were Pokemenz to be found in the water as well as on land. 

I went to Cave Point County (thanks for the correction, Lisa)! Park. The lake was kind of calm, but the waves crashing into the caves sounded just like Thunder Hole in Acadia. 

I stopped at every little park and overlook I felt like until I got to White Fish Dunes State Park and then waded in the waves for a while. 

Lake Michigan LOOKS like the Atlantic...

But it smells different and the lobster fishing is awful!!! On the plus side, there are fewer things in it that want to snack on you. 

It was a balm for my tired soul and I enjoyed every minute of the sand, water and solitude. I didn't listen to news or tv. I let everything just go and was all the better for it.  All too soon it was time to come back to Madison/reality but now that I've done it once, I am absolutely certain that I will be returning to Door County much more often!

Monday, July 25, 2016

Weekly Challenge #277: Running 'round in Circles

This week's Diva Challenge was to use circles as a string. I'm not sure if this qualifies or not (it's not a typical string and the tile is large-6"x6") but I'm claiming it anyway. It's kind of a two-fer because our Challenge tangle for next month's Wisconsin Tangle Artist's Coalition meeting is 'Reticulated' which I used to fill in each outer circle around the doodle-jewels.  I had a great time making it. Very relaxing compared to last week when we had to tangle while moving and I made myself motion sick! TMI?  Without further ado...Diva Challenge #277:
Thanks for another great challenge, Laura! PS-Loved your vacation pics!

Cranes In The Hood

Imagine my surprise when I peeped out my front window the other morning and saw the new neighbors out for a walk. 

I guess they've been around all summer-living large on the backyard bird feeders. 

They pulled this little stunt and got a lecture from me about the proper use of crosswalks.

No self respecting 'crane' would want to be accused of 'jay' walking!

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Diva Challenge and Zentangle Expo

This week's Diva Challenge was to tangle while in motion; in a car, on a bus, plane, swing, etc.  Since I am the primary driver at our house, don't own a horse (how cool would a horseback one have been), and I don't have any flights to exotic destinations planned, I fired up my old rocking chair and set off. 
This is a pan pastel stenciled background that I did at Zentangle Expo a couple of weekends ago. I kind of wish I hadn't wasted it on a tile I knew was going to turn out wonky, but if you squint, tilt your head sideways and view it at a distance of precisely 12.6 meters, it looks alright...sort of. It was a fun challenge to do even though I got a little motion sick!

You can see the background below among some others we tried at Zentangle Expo. The ones that looked like I blew ink around with a straw were made by... blowing ink around with a straw. The two colored ones are made with pan pastels and stencils and the black and white is a Japanese method called Notan. (click on the word for a description).

I really loved the Notan. Here is that same tile tangled. 

I also took Chris Letourneau's class on Tangled Gardens. It was really interesting to plan out your tile with a gardener's mindset with regards to height, features and accents. Chris has us make little books to keep our tangle ideas in . 
I took Connie Soba's 'Go With The Flow' class about choosing tangle patterns with common elements that make them flow one into the other. This was the tile from that class. I really need to work more on this concept. I like the feeling of this tile. 

When I got home, I made some of my own pastel backgrounds. I love the colors, but you have to be really careful and use a piece of tissue paper under your hand when you tangle them because the pastel is chalky/crayon-y and rubs off easily. You have to spray them with workable fixative before you tangle and regular fixative afterward. 

So, since Expo, I  have been a tangling fool!  This is a blended, pan pastel background I did on a while tile and tangled it with dragonflies in black, white, purple and silver. 

And this is tangled on a hand colored tile that Tess Imbogersteg did. I'm pretty sure it's ink. It was in my packet of goodies from her class. Since it was her tile, I used her 'Breakers' tangle in the lower left corner. 

Expo was an amazing experience for the third year in a row. Kudos to Katie Butler and her crew! It just gets better every year! Lots of new experiences, techniques and friends!

Sturgeon Bay Speed Racer

I was in Sturgeon Bay over the weekend and went to see the Third Ave Playhouse's matinee of Shooting Star with Doug Mancheski and Amy En...