021 - Home
9x13" - Colored Pencil on Bristol

These last weeks have been a bit chaotic - so I made sure to take some time in the studio yesterday.

It doesn't help that it looks like this outside:
I am very ready for winter to be over.  

House : Home

These last few months the house has been kind of on pause.  It is still pretty cold here, so I don't want to do too much painting until I can open up the windows.  I've got a lot of plans for the house this summer - hopefully I can get to them all!
Even though it is still a work-in-progress, the house is starting to feel a bit more like home.
All of the pieces here are mine except the two in wood frames.  The top one is by Julianna Swaney and the bottom one is by Katy Horan.

This is my $5 thrifted vintage record cabinet with a $1 vase and a revamped free mirror.  :)  It makes me happy.  

More artwork!  Clockwise from the top: A painting by a good friend Tom Berenz, a paper-cutting from another good friend Darren Houser,  a small gouache painting from my thesis show, and a drawing from way back in undergrad.

What's Cooking?

This week has been a little bit less jam packed than the last few weeks, and I've been able to spend a lot of time in the kitchen.
We've been eating a lot of veggies lately.  One of my favorite veggie-based meals is Portabella Mushroom burgers.  They are so quick & easy, and taste wonderful to boot.

portabella burgers

I've been doing some preliminary garden planning as well.  I'd like to get my seedlings started in the next week or so.  I can't wait to have some fresh herbs and veggies!  My plan for this year is lots of beans, lettuce, swiss chard, tomatoes, chives, basil & peppers.  I'd also like to establish a perennial herb garden in our front yard.  We've got a big raised bed and I'd really like to rip out some of the decorative shrubs that are there, and plant some edibles.
So far I'm thinking:  Chives, Thyme, Sage, Rosemary, Oregano, and Mint (in a container).  If you guys have any other perennial herbs you'd recommend, please let me know!

For now, I'm perfecting my homemade yogurt, and working on writing up recipes for some of my favorite dishes.
homeade yogurt

Return of My Etsy Shop

I've finally gotten back on track with my Etsy Shop!  
I'm mostly listing vintage items, but soon I hope to post more artwork and knitting patterns. 
Here's a preview of what's new!

Thrifted Recently:

Nate and I were in Sioux Falls last weekend, and I got to do a good bit of thrifting!  I found a ton of things, including some great jewelry.  You cant beat necklaces for 75 cents.
057 - Necklace

I may take this one apart for the beads.  I'm not sure yet though.
056 - Necklace

I love the simplicity of this one - it is really long and can be doubled up as well.
054 - Necklace

055 - Necklace

I also picked up this great little pan!
064 - pan
It is so cute I could marry it.

Self Portrait, Winter Needs to be Over.

Sometimes when I get stuck in the studio I do a self portrait to get myself back on track.  This is the result:
14x14" Oil on Canvas.
072 - self portrait
I think this last leg of winter has really worn on me.  I've been working from home (teaching online) and yearning to get out and about - ride my bike, start my garden, etc.  It has been cold and windy as heck.
The 45 mph winds make even a 30 degree day seem frigid.
These shots are from the beginning of our drive home from Wisconsin to South Dakota - it is a drive that should take 71/2 hours, and ended up taking close to 10 because of black ice and crazy winds!
No more driving until winter is gone please!

Wisconsin Protests

While in Wisconsin over our Spring Break we made it a point to get to the Capitol to protest against the budget repair being put forth by Governor Walker.  The protests have been amazing to watch, and I'm so proud of my fellow Wisconsinites for standing up for what they believe in, and not letting corporate interests trump human interests.
{Inside the Capitol in Madison - one of my favorite places to be in Wisconsin}
Outside of the Capitol on a Sunday afternoon - there have been massive protests every Saturday since the bill was introduced.  Even though Walker signed the bill into law this last week, people are still coming out.  The lawn of the Capitol is torn up from all of the people who have been protesting the last few weeks.  This last Saturday approximately 100,000 people showed up to protest.
{Nate and I}
We were so thankful to have made it out to protest.
Even though the bill has passed, I hope it serves a wake-up call for the middle class.  The news keeps reporting that this issue has 'awaken a sleeping giant.'  I think the most disturbing thing about this issue has been the disrespect shown towards Wisconsin's educators.  There are people who are celebrating the fact that this bill went through.  I think that is downright shameful.  Would I celebrate if another person got an 8% salary cut, and lost their rights to collectively bargain?  No.  I've always held the belief that you should never look down upon another person unless you are helping them up.  
That being said, I think that the biggest issue here is not just the cuts to education, but the influence that corporations are now having over our government.  This is a video showing how the 'Citizens United' bill is affecting our political system.  I think that whatever party you are a part of, you should be disturbed by this:

CD Release!

Sorry for the recent hiatus - the combination of midterm grading, traveling to Wisconsin, and getting ready for Nate's CD Release Party mixed with frequent Migraines has left me with very little 'fun' time recently!  But I'm back on track now!
So, the next few posts will be a recap of the last few weeks:
First off, Nate had his CD Release Party here in South Dakota - and it went over really well!  Here are some pics from the show:
He had a group of his friends here accompany him on many of the songs, and he did a combination of songs from the CD and covers of artists that inspired him.
{Chris Champion}

Nate even forced me to sing a few songs with him.  I am terrified of singing in public!  I don't know why, it is just extremely nerve wracking for me.  Here's a video of a Josh Ritter song that we covered together:

I'm really glad I did it!  Although I'm glad the color quality of the video isn't too great otherwise you'd be able to see that I turn bright red anytime I am nervous!
Anyways, if you are interested, here's a link to where you can purchase a CD, and preview all of the tracks: