Muffins

  • Chickens

    These chickens were modeled on my own chickens, Duck and Cluck. I took an online class from Anita Lehman through Carla Sonheim's website that was a very thoughtful look at composition. Sometimes it's nice to get back to basics and see how structure influences outcome. And, on a side note, it's been nice to have fresh eggs to eat and use in baked goods!

  • A New (Old) Way of Working

    I don't know why it took so long for me to go back to making collage and mixed media pieces. Maybe I didn't think they were "serious" enough, or I forgot how much fun it was for me to work this way, or maybe I just forgot how to do it. Recently, I found some fruit that I painted simply on canvas paper. I took out cheap, thin acrylics, poured green and yellow on top, and pushed the paint around the paper. After it dried, I tore out the fruit and saved them for a collage. That's where my playing around with fruit bowls began the other day. For a slight change of pace, I took a yellow piece of painted paper and turned it into a French press. I've mainly been using really smushy media, like a soft pencil, conte crayons, and Faber Castell gelatos. These collaged pieces really feel like me, and I'm loving all the color!

  • New Things!

    I'm test driving some new products at the market this Saturday. It's so much fun to play with color and shape on functional bags and totes. I like the simplicity of playing with fabric, paint, and potatoes. Yes, potatoes! That's what I used to make my stamps......and, they're compostable!

  • Stretching

    I decided to challenge myself with an online course, Explore Florals, taught by Victoria Johnson. It was three weeks of design briefs, each focusing on a different way to think about florals, with an accompanying palette. It was harder than I thought to get out of my own way of doing things and try something new. Just like life, I suppose.

  • Creative Thinking

  • UPPERCASE!

    I am so thrilled to have my very first drawn illustration in the current issue of UPPERCASE Magazine! 

    I drew this on Thanksgiving, 2017. We decided to stay home and celebrate, just the three of us. I wanted my daughter to feel like that even though we weren't going anywhere, it was going to be a special day. So, I let her pick the drinks!

  • Pushing Forward

    I'm trying to remember this and to boldly learn new things without getting bogged down by self doubt. It's hard!

  • Plugging Away


    I'm trying to enjoy the quiet stillness of winter. We've had lots of snow (and snow days) and rain, which has made for long weeks of nasty weather. I'm drawing daily and I can see myself steadily improving. 

  • Winter

    above image—not winter

    Winter is not my favorite season. It's cold, it's dark, it's icy....but with those restrictions comes permission to quiet your mind, think, make. It's the season when I have the most time. My daughter is in preschool, and farmers' markets are few and far between. It allows me to focus on my art and on all the other little projects that I think about during the summer. This year I'm stretching and taking Make Art That Sells, an online course from art agent Lilla Rogers. So far, I feel out of my element, which I'm taking as a good sign. Growth comes in fits and starts, and it isn't always comfortable.

  • Upcoming Holiday Season

    I'm getting ready for the upcoming holiday season! I'll be at the Bennington Farmers' Market on the first and third Saturdays of Nov. and Dec., and I'll be at the Williamstown Berkshire Grown Markets on Nov. 19th and Dec. 17th. I'll have lots of lovely linen aprons and tea towels, and delicious edibles, perfect for gift giving or enjoying with your family and friends. See you soon!

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Muffins

I love muffins. There is nothing better than waking up on a lazy Sunday morning and deciding to bake them for my still-slumbering sweetie. As much as I don't mind long and complicated recipes, I like my muffins to be simple. And as much as I like to try new flavor combos, I like my muffins to be blueberry. It's the kind of baked good that you don't want to fuss over after just rolling out of bed. Minimal directions and minimal ingredients are best.

These were mixed and baked in no time this morning. We enjoyed them while sitting at our dining room table in front of our new, spotless replacement windows, watching the rain melt the sizable piles of snow into slightly less intimidating piles and deeming our road drivable again. Even clean-up was minimal; I used one bowl, a few measuring cups, one muffin pan, and the teaspoon and half teaspoon measuring spoons. So easy. Because I'm all for spreading the gospel of the underappreciated muffin, I'm even giving you the recipe below. Don't go out for brunch next weekend. Stay in, make these and a big pot of coffee or tea, and eat a gourmet breakfast in your pajamas.

Fruit Muffins (adapted from Yankee Magazine's Blueberry Muffins, though this is a good, generic base for any fruit muffins)

1 3/4 c. flour (I use a mix of whole wheat, all-purpose, and white whole wheat)

1/4 c. sugar

2 1/2 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. salt

1 egg, beaten

1/2 c. milk or buttermilk

1/3 c. oil (neutral is best: canola and safflower are good choices)

1 c. fresh or frozen berries

opt. add-ins - flax seeds, nuts, etc.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Sift together all dry ingredients in a large bowl and then make a well in the center. Mix berries with a tablespoon of dry mix in a separate bowl. Whisk together the wet ingredients and pour them into the well. Stir briefly just to mix. Add berries and fold them in. Fill muffin tins 2/3rds full. Sprinkle with sugar for crunchy tops (I like cinnamon sugar). Bake 20 - 25 minutes. Immediately remove muffins from the pan and let them cool for as long as you can stand it. Makes about 9.