Monday, October 31, 2011

Halloween - Scaring Trick or Treaters with Art.. Bwhahahaaa

So, this afternoon and early evening is our city's annual trick or treat time. Ghouls, goblins, witches, bats, super heroes, princesses, ninja's, animals of all sorts and more come begging for candy. I hadn't decorated at all before this afternoon for the "big event"... but decided to pull out a couple of already carved pumpkins with lights, and some of my assemblage art to decorate the porch ... and to make it even better, I found a cool Halloween CD I'd bought long ago to play (loud) on the porch to scare the little monsters who came by... *evil laugh*.

If you want a good idea to keep kids away, get a scary Halloween CD and play it LOUD ... we had many younger trick or treaters run in fright.. bwhahaha...

But, there were many older ones who came by because of the music, and once here, yelled to their friend, "Hey!! Come and see what this lady has on her porch!" ...*L* Guess my assemblages are a draw, eh? *L* At least we didn't get egged from having some whacky things here.

Here's a short video clip of the porch and the fun some kids encountered in getting candy from us today! *G*

*NOTE* Be sure to turn off the playlist music on my blog so you can hear this video clip! Thanks.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Haunted Hotel Fun .....

The local Comfort Suites in town offered a fun haunted hotel for area youth and parents/grandparents to come to FREE of charge! Area businesses rented one of their rooms, decorated it for Halloween, and gave away candy to the kids, and business cards and flyers to the adults.

We arrived just shortly after it opened, and the lines were already very long! They moved pretty quickly to get inside ... not so quickly once on the haunted 3rd floor. There must have been hundreds and hundreds of kids who went thru ... I took two of our grandsons to it, and they had a great time!

They were excited to get to the entry inside .....

We had to go down a decorated hallway, and then walk up the stairway to the haunted 3rd floor... along the way there were creepy, bloody hand prints, and glow in the dark cobwebs, with some scary things hanging from the ceilings, and blacklights making things seem more erie...

And then the kids trick or treated at each decorated room, where they received some nice treats and certificates for various items at local businesses. The rooms were decorated great, but if you were at all claustrophobic, this was NOT a place to be! *L* Lots of people going up and down both sides of the hallway!

Then we went down the spooky elevator, complete with a ghoulish elevator man, to the first floor where they saw Culver's Scoopie, played some Halloween kids games and could have a hotdog snack too! (we skipped that part since it had taken us almost 2 hours to go thru the haunted rooms and the kids were anxious to get home to look at their bag of goodies and treats!).

It was a fun event!! Thanks Comfort Suites for putting it on!!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

The View From Here ....

Who says the Autumn colors are finished for this Fall ... they are bright and vibrant outside my livingroom windows... LOVE this time of year!!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Praying (and Playing) with a Mantis

So, today, I am busy at home, after working 4 hours at the office, and trying to get a newsletter done, when John comes in the house and tells me to "Hurry, come out here and see this BUG!"
He sounded like it was something really cool to see, so I grabbed my camera as I went out on the back deck ... it was a praying mantis, a pretty cool and unique bug!

I hadn't seen one close up and personal before, so I decided to take more photos of it. John had long ago left to go back to work, but not me, I played on with the mantis ... loved how it followed my every move, .. it's head moving back and forth, up and down as I pointed the camera at it ... just a foot or so away... then suddenly, IT JUMPED AT ME!! *L*

You could have heard my scream a few houses away even... stupid bug! Hahaa ... it didn't hurt me, just startled me, and made me laugh as I tried to follow it as it ran off.

Good thing it wasn't one of those giant ones.... read THIS! EEK.. *L*
"Mantises are exclusively predatory. Insects form the primary diet, but larger species have been known to prey on small scorpions, lizards, frogs, birds, snakes, fish, and even rodents; they will prey upon any species small enough to successfully capture and devour. Most species of mantis are known to engage in cannibalism. The majority of mantises are ambush predators, waiting for prey to stray too near. The mantis then lashes out at remarkable speed. Some ground and bark species, however, pursue their prey."

I should have tried to catch it again and put it in a bug house for the grandsons to take to school! Ahhh well... maybe it will come around again sometime?

Until then... back to the November Newsletter, and a chapter to read for Book Club tonite too!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Women of the Bible Workshop & Luncheon

This morning, our Church, held a workshop with Mother Anita Braden as our guest speaker & presenter. Twenty three of us enjoyed the women of the Bible that Mother Anita shared with us from the Old Testament. We learned how their ancient life lessons could help us in our present times as we continue our journey in faith. Interesting circumstances and events in their lives were gleamed from Eve, Sarah, Esther and Rehab, as well as other parts of scripture.

We hope to have a Women of the Bible Part II featuring women of the New Testament sometime in the next few months too.

Thank you to Mother Anita and to all who came to the event, to those who provided delicious soups and salads for the luncheon and made it a fun gathering!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

ECVA's Call For Entries Deadline Extended...

Notice to ALL artists!! Check this out.....

Imaging the Sacred Art of Chant, the latest call for artists at the Episcopal Church and Visual Arts has extended their deadline for entries to Nov. 8, 2011.

Good news for ME... since there would have been NO way I'd be able to make the original deadline which WAS just a few days away!

Thanks ECVA!! Lord, please inspire me to make the new deadline with a God inspired assemblage!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Copter Ride, Hay Fort, Corn Maze - A Fun Family Sunday

The local farm stand had a fun day of various events. I noticed they had helicopter rides, that were pretty reasonable, and knew the grandson's hadn't ever been up in a copter before.... (neither had I), so we invited them to get a ride and have some fun at Pearce's Farm Stand, just outside of Delavan in Walworth.

Janel, Jeff and I went up for the first ride, then John, Jake and Josh had their turn... (old)John stayed put on the ground - chicken! *lol*

After landing the boys headed for the hay fort and corn maze...

Josh ran into a guy wearing a Bear's sweatshirt and decided to show him how tough Packer fans can be!! *lol* (it was actually this Illinois guy's idea for this photo and was a lot of fun for Josh to pose for!) No actual Bear fans were injured in this photo opportunity..*G*

Children of the corn...eeeekkk!! Pretty corny eh? heh heh!

Tons of pumpkins to choose from too... but none as big as their dad's giant 876.5 pound pumpkin at home!

John and I had a lot of fun, a nice ride, and great afternoon with John, Janel, Jake, Josh and Jeff!

John and the Giant Pumpkin - Celebrity

Congrats to our son, John, who has been featured with a couple of articles and colored photos of his pumpkin this last week ... one in the Clinton Topper with the grandsons and the 876.5 pound pumpkin, and one today in the Janesville Gazette!

Entertaining article and nice photo ... check it out also at their online link here.

Clinton man grows one of the state’s largest 2011 pumpkins By CATHERINE IDZERDA, Janesville Gazetter, Sunday, Oct. 16, 2011
Photo by Dan Lassiter

John Karstetter of Clinton raised this 876.5-pound pumpkin, which took fourth place in a state competition in September. Karstetter has only been entering pumpkins in competition for two years.

OK, 16 ounces to a pound, so 876.5 pounds is 14,024 ounces. Each pie calls for 15 ounces of pumpkin, so 14,024 divided by 15 is 934.93 pies. Add 102 gallons of sweetened condensed milk and … well, never mind.

It’s unlikely that John Karstetter will allow anybody to make pie out of his 876.5-pound pumpkin.

First, because it would call for about 312 tablespoons of cinnamon, and second, because Karstetter’s pumpkin took fourth place at the state’s pumpkin weigh-off that was held Sept. 24.

The first place winner, Joe Menting of Seymour, grew a pumpkin that weighed 1,258.5 pounds. The world record, which is held by Chris Stevens of New Richmond, is 1,810.5 pounds.

Still, Karstetter has plenty of reasons to be pleased.
“This is only my second year in competition,” Karstetter said.
Last year, he grew a 294-pound pumpkin—you can see a photo of it in the Gazette’s on-line, community-submitted photo gallery under “Fall Fun, 2010.”

A friend, who also grows large pumpkins, encouraged Karstetter to give it a try.
He found that giant pumpkin growers were a friendly bunch, always willing to lend a hand or offer advice. There’s even a Wisconsin Giant Pumpkin Growers association that offers growing advice and encourages participation in the contests that are held throughout the Midwest.

Like most giant pumpkin growers, Karstetter grew “Atlantic Giants,” the variety that yields winners. Strains of those seeds from winning pumpkins are often used. For example, Karstetter used 844 Kopp for seeds and 975 Kopp as the male pollinator. Kopp is the name of the grower, and the number represents the size, in pounds, of the pumpkins grown from that seed.

Karstetter starts his pumpkins seeds under a heat lamp at the end of April or beginning of May and transplants them after all danger of frost has passed. Pumpkins are grown in a plot that’s about 30-feet by 30-feet. Almost as soon as the fruit is established, Karstetter culls all but one or two of the best fruits. He carefully tracks fungicide, pesticide and fertilizer use, being careful not to overdo it.
“You don’t want to give them too much juice or you risk a split, a blowout,” Karstetter said. “A blowout” is a split pumpkin.
Giant pumpkins grow 15 to 20 pounds every day, and vines can grow as much as 2 feet in the same time period. Last summer, Karstetter had two potential winners. One day, he watered his patch. That night, a huge rainstorm came through. The next day, a pumpkin weighing more than 600 pounds split open.

After Halloween, Karstetter will cut open his pumpkin, collect the seeds—which will now be known as Karstetter 876— and then pose his kids inside of it. It’s probably for the best that he has no plans for pie.
After all, pumpkin pie needs topping and it’d be difficult to calculate how much whipped cream he’d need. One dollop per slice, 8 slices per pie, 934 pies …

Saturday, October 15, 2011

A Tribute to Art & Life Event - Celebrating Brad

What a great event ... lots of work went into it I'm sure... and what a wonderful tribute to Brad, as well as supporting cancer research and supporting thru a scholarship a student attending MIAD (Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design).

I was honored to be one of the artists doing art "live". People came to have fun, see art, offer bids on many items donated by area businesses and individuals, see art being made, and bid on that finished art, as well as remember Brad.

Delicious food & beverages were also offered throughout the evening, and live music after the art bidding was done too. The vodka pear collins were very delicious as was the Indian food, mini cheeseburgers, truffles, and many other great dishes!

It was fun to meet and talk with people who came by, and explain some of what my "An Artist's Muse" assemblage art torso was all about... and to hear their comments too!

There were also steamrolling prints up for bid... artists made/carved their print designs on wood and then inked them with a couple coats of ink, and took them out to the street, placed paper over the top, a piece of carpet on that, and a regular steamroller pressed the ink onto the paper... and voila!! Beautiful prints!

And the winning bid on "AN ARTIST'S MUSE" went to this young man ... in the excitement of it all, I forgot to get his name, but he seemed excited to get the winning bid, and was looking forward to taking it home. I'm thankful he liked it so much and helped support the tribute to Brad too!


See some of the earlier beginning work of this art torso here