Saturday, November 29, 2008

Being Thankful!

Ode to a Thanksgiving Pie

Pie, pie, pie!!!
O-Turkey be round,
and fit into a pan,
Then top with a pastry crust,
and a pie U be.
But sadly not for me...

Composed by my brother, Steven Hastings, on November 11, 2008, the only one of the Hastings siblings not gathered in Port Angeles, to celebrate a day of thankfulness and a love of food and family.
Here's everyone but me and Serene, who were taking pictures. Deb Alwine, on the left, was the only orphan this year, and she's been part of the last four Thanksgivings, so she might as well be part of the family.

David's boyfriend, Brian, had the idea that we should do an All Pie Thanksgiving, thinking it would be all desserts, but NO! With a food-obsessed family like ours, the challenge was to make everything into a pie shape, from the deconstructed turkey with mashed potato topping, to stuffing pie, corn pie, squash pie with pumpernickle crust, appetizer pies filled with whipped cream cheese and honey and olive stuffing, chard and wild rice with potato slices in a Pie-ella pan, pie-shaped foccacia, stuffing pie....we had to do it in long courses til we finally got to the cake baked and frosted like a pie by Serene, Praline Surprise (a big favorite from last year by Brian), Connie's (Queen of Pies) famous apple (from the back yard tree in West Seattle), Deb's chocolate in a grahm crust, and my REAl mince pie with elk from Elsie and apples from Tom in Sequim. The theme next year will be French food.

I left my chili pepper and flamingo lights from last Solstice up all year, so all that's needed for a celebration is to plug in. The Big Doll (the white butt on the left above) is also a part of any party since fall when I brought her in from the garage. Just as soon as I finish the Doll Book (only needs proofing now), she goes back to center stage to be finished and prepared for her next showing in Pioneer Square in Seattle.

I need to get people to pay attention when I take a picture. Hugh and Connie are in the background, with Serene and Amal in the front.

Here David helps Serene figure out her camera. She's becoming as tall and beautiful as her cousins, and it was good to see her drawing and sewing for amusement and participating in the adult talk about books and other meals.

I am very proud about the closeness of our family...we all like being together, and cooked and ate and played dice and knitted far into the night...around 8pm we were saying, is it late enough to go to bed yet?...but we made it to 10pm without any TV, movies, or other electronic entertainment.

Beautiful flower arrangement from Mom...Thank you, Mom. Happy Thanksgiving to the other branches of the family in Chicago, North Carolina, and Vermont...and to all the ones we love and who touch our lives all over the world.

Here's one for distant friends and distant, Tim, and David C at a pivotal moment for him in Montpelier. I hope you are loving your new home, David.

Back to present time, with Connie coloring--what an excellent break from her high-stress "day job." Serene, Hugh, and Connie rushed back to Seattle early on Friday morning to be in time to perform in Snowflake Lane. It's at the shopping center in Bellevue, from now til the end of the year and should not be missed. The singers and dancers are wonderful and the snowfall at the end is truly magical!

A BIG THANK YOU to family and friends and fans all over the world for being who you are!!!

I can't have a long weekend without ART, so after I cleaned the house, the oven, and the laundry yesterday, I worked to finish up my pieces for the Holiday Show at Port Angeles Fine Arts Center. The show will be open through December, so do come by and support this wonderful institution by buying something wonderful for yourself or a friend.

This is part of the flat series, using piecing and found objects. The face is the back side of a football button that I found in the street, and the penny on her chest was another find the same day. I covered the raw fabric edges with the stick-on copper foil usually used to make stained glass.

A squashed bottle cap, a mah jong tile, antique hardware, brass and copper wires, and one of those long, nonsensical titles I love: A Confluence of Fortuitous Events.

Watch for my UpComing Events: 3-D Doll Making in Tucson in January and in Corvalis, OR, in the spring at a time yet to be determined, the publication of the second edition of my Doll book...There's a GOOD CHANCE it will actually happen in December!!!...of this year. Watch here for New News as it happens!


Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Excuses! Excuses!

I just received Art Girlz latest message and Blog, and know that again I have slipped back into my bad old uncommunicative ways. I don't suppose that taking classes the last two weekends for work, making pieces for the Port Angeles Fine Art Center Christmas show, and trying to get my doll book in shape to go to the printer in early December is any excuse...I've found sleep to be the best cure for the cold that's been going around at the office, too.
Every day I hear heart-wrenching stories from people who are ill with not enough insurance coverage or have lost half the savings they thought they had for retirement. I know I'm going to be keeping my "day job" until I'm 70, if I can keep staggering to work and if the arthritis in my thumbs doesn't keep me from moving other people's flesh around.
I feel a bit of hope and new optimism and feeling for our fellow humans since the recent election...I hope it continues. Together we can change the person at a time.
The Seattle family is all coming to my house for Thanksgiving, but, inspired by David's boyfriend, Brian, it's going to be an All Pie Thanksgiving, with turkey shepherd's pie, stuffing pie with creamed onions inside, squash pie in a pumpernickle crust, and I made my own mince meat for the first time, with a can of elk donated by Elzie--it's Delicious! I Will send pictures, and maybe even recepies. I'm at page 102 on the second edition of DESIGNING A DOLL AND MAKING FACES INSPIRATION BOOK (love those long titles!)...and SOON it will be available for sale. Lots of color pictures and step-by-step design and construction of several of my dolls that you will be able to duplicate.
I've been having some difficulty with getting messages through my website, so if you've placed an order and haven't heard back from me, please email. I'm working on getting a local web wiz who has time to help, because I'd like to start teaching classes directly through my site. In person classes are coming up in Tucson and now in Corvalis, OR, too. I'm looking forward to getting to know the Northwest better. I never thought I'd take so easily to becoming a laid-back West Coast Gal.

OF MORTALITY are two newish pieces in the style of
the Famous Faces series, except I bound the edges
with copper foil ususally used for stained glass. I like
long semi-nonsensical titles, too, great for weird (positive
term) dolls. I'm happy to receive your contributions/sugges-
tions for additional titles. I have to add a few new pieces
this weekend.