Showing posts from August, 2012

Friday art: photorealism

Take a close look at the artwork above - how was it done?
No, it isn't a photograph.
Give up?
It was done with ball point pens and took around 30 hours to complete.
Simply amazing isn't it.  The artist is Samuel Silva (born in 1983), a Portugese lawyer who only does this wonderful art as a hobby.  I only came across this talented man as there was a story in the newspaper.  According to the artist: "I don't mix nor blend them. Ballpoint pen ink dries instantly and cannot be erased. I just cross hatch the different colors in layers to create the illusion of blending and the illusion of colors I don't actually have."
Here are a few more. 
The one on the left is the drawing and the one on the right is the photo. It was based on a Russian photographer, Taraina. The artist used 7 different coloured ball point pens  using cross hatching to create the illuson of additional hues and depth.

History: School milk

Who remembers free school milk?
I can.
And yuck . . . warm, creamy milk in glass bottles that tasted horrible.
Why were the bottles always left in the sun to get warm, especially in summer? They could sit for quite sometime until recess, some probably went slighly off!
And if you forgot to shake the bottle you got a mouth full of clumpy cream!
The programme started at the beginning of the 20th century with all children in kindergarten, infant and primary schools receiving free milk to improve their nutrition and general health. Between 1951 and 1973 the Commonwealth Schools’ Free Milk Scheme  provided one third of a pint of whole milk per day to primary school children throughout Australia. The scheme ceased om 1973 but reintroduced in 1994.
Providing the milk had cost $72,000 in 1951, whereas it had grown in cost to just over $10 million in 1969.  By 1970 the government was starting to wonder if the programme was producing any benefit, except turning children off milk. This document

A mothers love

So don't compare yourself to other mothers in "Blogland" and think you are doing a bad job because you do things differently to them. We are all different people, some of us work outside the home during the day, others are at home, some come from very different backgrounds and we probably all have different ways of doing things. None of these things make us lesser mothers.  In the end - all that matters is the love we give our children.  

Maintaining weight: Update

I knew that maintaining my weight would be hard work, but I think over winter it has been even harder.  In past winters I have enjoyed puddings with custard and cream or those lovely fruit tarts — but not this year, too many calories and as soon as I eat a bowl-full, on goes the weight. So I just stay clear of these o-so-yummy foods!!  However with my birthday last week I did enjoy something "very naughty" -  dark chocolate walnut brownies covered in dark chocolate sauce and ice-cream (!!!) without (too) feeling guilty (just felt rather sick afterwards!). Once a year can't be harmful can it?
But I can report that I have continued to maintain my weight and haven't seen too much movement up or down — just steady as she goes!! 

Every morning (after my shower) my scales and I get together and see what is happening — yes, it can be a depressing way to start the day, but necessary.  On previous weight loose occasions  I would stop checking my weight and it wasn’t until I …

Reading memories

For those in Australia – are you doing anything special this year to celebrate the National Year of Reading?

Reading is such an integral part of my life, I couldn’t imagine not being able to read, I read every day no matter how busy I am — it keeps me sane!! 

I read in my lunch hour, I read before I go to bed and I read on weekends.  Life is too short not to find the time to read, even squeezing in one chapter of a good book.  There is always a few minutes each day to read.

What early memories of reading do you have?

My earliest memories are of my mother reading to me - curled up on the couch in the evening listening to fairy tails, poems and stories such as Wind in the Willow and Mary Poppins. However, as I was such a poor reader, I remember looking at pictures (rather than attempting to read) in our National Geographic collection or spending ages examining the large world atlas we owned—pictures can be worth a thousand words.  My first and more memorable moment is when I read an e…

Art Friday: Lee Kyu-Hak

Artist: Lee Kyu-Hak
Here is another art idea for all you homeschoolers!
Lee Kyu-Hak is a Korean artist who makes wonderful recreations of famous art works (mosaics) by wrapped wood chips (you could use matches) in colourful newspaper and the pieces below are the result. My favourite is the the Almonds Blossoms (above). How creative and clever is this? Most of those below are recreations of Vincent Van Gogh's famous paintings.  Enjoy todays art. 

Spring is on it's way

The blossom in my garden has starting to bloom, spring is on its way.  It has put a bounce in my step and I am so looking forward to more of this wonderful sunny warm weather.

For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him.
Colossians 1:16

Our God has fashioned earth and sky,
Sun, moon, and stars beyond compare;
His workmanship we can’t deny—
His fingerprints are everywhere. 



Do not commit adultery. James 2:11
An "unforgiving, puritan Anglo-Saxon" attitude to adultery is damaging married life in Britain, driving couples to divorce rather than strengthening the family, according to an outspoken academic.  Catherine Hakim, argues that a "sour and rigid English view" of infidelity is condemning millions of people to live frustrated "celibate" lives with their spouses. In a book bound to provoke controversy, she likens faithful husbands and wives to "caged animals" and argues that they should be free to explore their "wild side" with lovers without the threat of divorce.
Meeting a secret lover for a casual encounter should be as routine as dining out at a restaurant instead of eating at home.

By Catherine Hakim, British social scientist
Affairs - no, I am not having one and have no desire to have one. But I have worked with married men who have had affairs with women.   I often wonder what their wives know …

Back to basics food: update 1

A month ago I wrote about changing the way we ate (LINK) — reducing the amount of processed foods and increasing the amount of fruit and vegetables we bought — back to basics purchasing and cooking. It has been an interesting experiment and I have noticed a few things.
*  Firstly the food bill has decreased. I am not sure yet by how much, but perhaps around a 3rd. Reducing the bill wasn’t my intention as this wasn’t an exercise in being frugal, however this is a  positive outcome that I am pleased with and some of the spare money can be used in my vegetable garden. I have also found that I visit very few aisle in the supermarket, my shopping list has shrunk considerably and I can do the shopping much quicker. It certain saves time.

*  Even though my aim was to stop buying canned food, I have found I have needed to buy a few cans e.g. tomatoes, tomato paste and beans (e.g. red kidney and butter beans). I could use dried beans, but they need to be soaked overnight and sometimes I alter …

Anxiety and trust

Anxiety does not empty tomorrow of its sorrows, but only empties today of its strength.

Charles Spurgeon


I sought the LORD, and he heard me, and delivered me from all my fears.
Psalm 34:4

One of the hardest things is trusting the Lord. I was having this conversation with my mother (who is now 80) - she is struggling with this very thing - anxiety is taking over and she finds it hard to just TRUST. Why do we as humans find it so hard to do this - I think it is because we don't like loosing control and that is what trust means - loosing control and handing that control over to the Lord.  And to make it more difficult, He does things we don't understand and that makes it even harder to trust. But we must, as Jerry Bridges says in his book "Trusting God",  "We must learn to trust God when He doesn't tell us why (he does certain things), when we don't understand what He is doing".
My husband has been without a job since December 2011, this most …

Art Friday: Giuseppe Arcimbolde

Artist: Giuseppe Archimbolde
1527 - 1593
Giuseppe Arcimboldo was born in Milan in 1527, his father was also a painter.  Early in his career he was commissioned to do stained glass window designs beginning in 1549, including the Stories of St. Catherine of Alexandria vitrage at the Duomo. In 1556 he worked with Giuseppe Meda on frescoes for the Cathedral of Monza. In 1558, he drew the cartoon for a large tapestry of the Dormition of the Virgin Mary, which still hangs in the Como Cathedral today. In 1562 he became court portraitist to Ferdinand I at the Habsburg court in Vienna, and later, to Maximilian II and his son Rudolf II at the court in Prague. He was also the court decorator and costume designer. King Augustus of Saxony, who visited Vienna in 1570 and 1573, saw Arcimboldo's work and commissioned a copy of his "The Four Seasons" which incorporates his own monarchic symbols.
Arcimboldo's conventional work, on traditional religious subjects, has fallen int…