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Artistic Ruminations
The Online Journal of Kristi Schueler
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Just a note to any newcomers to my journal. I keep all posts other than art posts as friends only. If you feel we have things in common other than art and wish to read the daily whining, groaning, excitement and ponderings, just leave a comment.

I have started a new "visual art blog" where I try to post M-F with at least a photograph that captures the day, but I hope to start postng Art Journal pages and Collages etc. with more frequency soon. You can access that through kristischueler. I also have a blog about things I've read, watched or listened to at culturecatalog and my knitting at knittingfool.

I will not automatically add everyone back, that is up to my discretion, but I don't often refuse to add anyone.

Welcome!
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kurki15
My laptop crashed yesterday! I'm pretty sure it's just a hard drive crash, but it means I'm a little out of commission and I'll probably be needing to fork out quite a bit of cash to try get some of the data pulled from it. Luckily I do have a new and larger hard drive for it on hand. So, I'm hoping they can swap the hard drives get that new one going and send me on my way with that one while they try recover data from the old one, but we'll have to see.

In the meantime, I'm having a sale - the current and the next classes are all $5 off and all the knitting patterns are .50 off in hopes I can generate some sales to help pay for this. http://www.designedlykristi.com/shoppingcart/ If you've been thinking about taking Printmaking, Backgrounds, Beg Bookbinding, or Intro to Collage Design, this would be a *really* great time for you to sign up. And, if you've thought about my knitting patterns, again, now would be a *really* great time for you to order them! I'd appreciate any word spread of the sale as well...

It's the worst time for it to happen as a term of classes just started. But I've known the hard drive hasn't been happy for over a year and procrastinated about taking it in because it seemed I always had something important going on - classes, or prep for classes, or a knitting pattern release to prep for etc. And, frankly, the thought of being without my laptop is like the thought of being without my right arm!

I'll be calling a recommended place in a few minutes when they open and will know more then.

In the meantime, if you are trying to get ahold of me try my gmail account as the web mail for my domain name sucks! kristi.schueler (AT) gmail (DOT) com and if you hear of anyone having troubles contacting me, pass that along. Any e-mail sent yesterday was probably lost or will likely be lost for a week or more...

Oh, I also won't be getting my LJ Comment notifcations very regularly, so please don't hold it against me if you don't get a timely reply.
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An idea can turn to dust or magic, depending on the talent that rubs against it. -- William Bernbach

I did post this yesterday, but forgot to let you know over here. This week you get to crawl inside my head as I walk you through the majority of my design process. It's a glimpse of one way that I rub my magic against my ideas so they don't turn to dust and float away like Burnbach says. In this case it's a look at knitting design, but the thought process is pretty similar for my handbound books or my mixed media pieces as well.
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The first term of classes for 2006 at Designedly, Kristi is nearly upon us! The classrooms will be opening to those who have completed payment this afternoon so you can get a chance to get to know the classroom and each other a bit before the lessons start.

There is still time to sign-up! Remember that this is the only chance to take these two classes in 2006. The choices this term are Bodacious Backgrounds and Printmaking. Sign-up at http://www.designedlykristi.com/shoppingcart/ or check out the FAQ at http://www.designedlykristi.com/classes/faq.html. 

If you sign up after the classrooms are opened this afternoon I'll get you in as soon as a can, but it may be a few hours between your PayPal payment clearing and your receipt of the classroom access codes. I do send out notifications 2-3 times each day.

 I also want to thank those of you who have helped spread the word about these classes. If you tell others to include that they found out about the classes from you in the comments section when signing up you can earn five dollars off any class of your choice in 2006! Get five or six people to sign-up and you have a free class! It is important that they include a full name or an e-mail address in that comment so I can keep accurate records (e-mail address preferred unless you have taken classes from me before and are in my shopping cart database)

 Thanks again for your support and assistance!

 Now, go forth and be creative!

:-) Kristi

http://www.designedlykristi.com
http://www.artistsrow.com/designedlykristi/blog/
http://www.ebsqart.com/Artists/cmd_1349_profile_portfolio.htm

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kurki15
Creation Quotation Thursday #3 has been posted!

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I made the hard decision this fall to stop offering my on-line classes. There were some changes taking place in our home and I was feeling spread a bit thin and burnt out and didn’t feel I was doing justice to my classes. I thought not teaching the classes would free up all kinds of time. Well, it seems all the time I spent administrating the classes has been eaten up by answering the numerous e-mails that come in each day asking me when I’ll be offering classes again.

So, due to popular demand, my on-line classes are back again. Though there are a few changes. I’ll only be offering classes four times a year and I’ll only be offering two classes at a time.

I have taught 10 different classes since I started teaching through Eclectic Academy. Two have been retired for some time due to low enrollments. I have also chosen to retire the Creative Color class. There were too many technical issues in teaching this one on-line. Everyone’s monitors and printers displayed the colors too differently. I may come out with an e-book workbook of exercises that can be used as a companion to my favorite book on color, but that won’t be taking place until later in 2006.

This means that there will be seven classes rotated through 8 class slots, so in general each class will only be offered once each calendar year. So, if a class is offered and you want to take it, I encourage you to take it when you see it being offered.

The first term of 2006 will begin March 1st and I’ll be offering the popular Bodacious Backgrounds class as well as the Printmaking Techniques for the Home Studio class. You can sign up at http://designedlykristi.com/shoppingcart/index.php?cPath=21 as usual.

Now, I do have a favor to ask of you. In order to have enough time to actually create things and develop new techniques I have quit many of the on-line art groups. This means I need all the help I can get in spreading the word about the classes being offered again. So, if you are a part of an e-mail list or yahoogroup that would be interested in the classes please point them to www.designedlykristi.com/classes/ for more info. If you keep a blog please post about the classes there as well. I will be very grateful for your assistance in spreading the word!

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kurki15
CQ Thursday #2 is Posted!
http://www.artistsrow.com/designedlykristi/blog/2006/02/cq-thursday-2-gratitude-shrines.html


Or, get it right on your friends page by subscribing to dkartblog.

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Ionic
Originally uploaded by kurki15.

I posted the first Creation Quotation (blog-version) last week. This week I posted my own completed exercise and highlighted faith0322's completed exercise as well.

For more info, please see CQ #1 Round Up.

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kurki15
Creation Quotation Thursday

Feel free to grab this button if you are playing along. If you click on it there is more info about how it will work. Also, I've set up a Flickr group if you are thinking you might play along. I encourage you to post your completed pieces there with a link to your blog/LJ post in addition to posting to a blog/LJ if you have a Flickr account. Also, if you've taken a leap this week, please post there or comment on the blog so I can showcase your work on Thursday!

Please continue to spread the word if you can!

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Dimple SocksI finished DH's Dimple Socks on Wednesday night (just barely before his birthday was over) then didn't let him wear them until I could get natural light modeled shots :-)


But, the pattern is done, complete with the usual sock wrapper that is free with the downloadable version. You can get the specs and order it at my online shop.


These are a heavier weight socks knit on US 3 & 4 needles so are quite quick knits. If I was serious about it I was able to complete one sock in about 4 days of my usual evening knitting time, so a pair can be completed in a week if you have extra knitting time on the weekends.

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kurki15
I've started "Creation Quotation" back up, but this time in blog format rather than newsletter like it had been . For those who weren't around when I was doing CQ, it was a bi-weekly quote that I wrote a small essay on and created creativity exercises to go along with it. I'm going to try to do it weekly and would really like people to post finished exercises to their own blog/LJ etc. and leave a comment with a URL to view it. Each week I'll highlight a few of them, including links. Participating in this should be a great way to increase traffic to your own blogs/LJs.

I'm also trying to include at least one exercise that will work for writers so this isn't just for visual artists.

I'd appreciate some assitance in spreading the word about this. The first one was posted today and can be found at http://www.artistsrow.com/designedlykristi/blog/2006/01/take-flying-leap.html

Thanks!
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kurki15
Happy Birthday mustbehardtospe ! May the next year be everything you hope for!

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Old Favorites

It has been an interesting week around here this week. It has been plagued with restless sleep, neck pain, dental work, and the first full week of water aerobics since mid-December. It has also been sprinkled with comforts - connecting again with DH, heated rice packs, flannel sock monkey PJs, handknit socks, good books, and good music.

It has also been a week of triumph. While I've been loosing weight (slowly) since March it hasn't felt very real as there has been no acquisition of better fitting clothes. However, this week new jeans arrived and next week I should also have some new pants arriving. Then, today I went to Longmont to exchange a sweater my mom had given me for Christmas that was not my style and sized for me 30 pounds ago. I came home with another pair of pants and two great sweaters! Nevertheless it has been one looooong week!

Now, this weekend I have things to look forward to - tonight we'll be sharing bowls of chilli and movie(s) with a few friends. Tomorrow I go to a late matinee of Memoirs of a Geisha followed by sushi at what may be the last stop on our Sushi Tour of Fort Collins (though there is rumor of a new or soon opening sushi restaurant). Then Sunday evening we'll be gathering at a friend's house for a pot luck taco bar to celebrate all the January birthdays in our social circle.
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New Me!
Originally uploaded by kurki15.

Just as a bit of incentive/reminder for me...

This is me in some old jeans on November 1st - notice the gobs of extra denim hanging around in the area that should be my butt! Look of my nice new, shapely butt in smaller NEW jeans! Ah! Yeah!

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My Top Fiction Reads of 2005

My Non-Fiction Reads of 2005

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Anyone have an opinion on which one I should choose as my default icon for 2006??





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Emma and I wish you a safe and wonderful holiday season!

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Click for more photos and info if desired...

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Click for more info/other views if interested...

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A pic from November, but it fit this month's theme too well to pass up... Clicky to visit!

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kurki15
If you like tote bags and like making tote bags out of any materials, check out The Tote-Along and please feel free to join us!
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Also, if you enjoy cooking/baking you might wish to frequent the knitting blog this week as I invite you to partake in my knitting tea that took place last Saturday.

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Clicky, click!

That was not an easy feat... There must be more friendly shopping cart software. Then again, I wouldn't be pleased with a new learning curve for it's idiosyncracies either... *sigh*

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Click to see this week's...

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Ostkaka Cheese Curd
Originally uploaded by kurki15.

I know have spoken of this tradition before. Ostkaka is a Swedish dish that translates literally as "cheese cake." Though it bears more resemblance to a custard.

To make Ostkaka you mix homemade fresh cheese curd with a mixture of milk/cream, sugar and eggs and then bake. It gets golden brown on top and slightly crusty along the edges.

In Sweden it is traditional to serve with with preserves on top. However, we find it awfully sweet for that. But, one year DH forgot to add the sugar so then we had preserves on top and it was great like that.

Making the cheese curd is somewhat time intensive. You bring the milk up to about 100 degrees, being careful to not excees about 105 degrees. Then you add in some flour and then rennet. It then sits for an hour while the rennet builds the curd. Then you cut the curd and let it sit for another 30 minutes or so to start the process of seperating the curd from the whey. Then, using a slotted spoon you fish curd out from whey into a collander (not the mesh kind) and swirl it around kind of like panning for gold. This helps drain off even more whey. As you get a decent amount of curd in the colanger you put it into a mesh strainer that has been lined with a fine mesh muslin. When all the curd has been retrieved you can gently squeeze the curd in the muslin to release more whey. Then, I place it over a pan in the fridge to loose yet more. You don't want too much moisture in the curd of the custard won't set.

We aren't making ostkaka for Thanksgiving this year. But we had milk delivered early this week because of the holiday and DH is a bit busy with the novel writing as we near the end of the month so he hasn't had time to make gouda or cheddar so I made the ostkaka cheese this week. This was try number two, as I had a flub with last week's milk delivery that I used on Monday. But, DH still wouldn't have had time to make cheese with it anyhow so it's all good. This batch will go in the freezer tomorrow probably. Then it can be defrosted in the fridge in about two days and made into ostkaka whenever the mood strikes us this holiday season.

I may split it in two so we can do half batched. If I do that I will probably make a hald bacth for my Christmas tea on the 3rd. Only Ashley has ever had ostkaka and Sweden is kind of missing from my line up of goodies for the event.

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