Monday, December 29, 2014

Memoir '44: Moyland Wood Overlord

Canadians vs. Germans in the German countryside
I was happy to have a little time to spare for playing some games during the Holidays, including a large game of Memoir '44 Overlord (Moyland Wood scenario).  It looks so nice and BIG.

Christmas wrap-up, part 4: Saturday with the family

Christmas wrap-up part 3

We all have been enjoying the new soccer goals:

At a white elephant gift exchange, my friend Cindy got a Mt. Rushmore bottle provided by Chris. Chris then demonstrated how tasty was the berry wine he had put inside it:

 ...But shortly after that, Mt. Rushmore was stolen away by our friend Jim.

White elephant gift exchange

Christmas wrap-up part 2

Len shows off his smart red shoes:

 ...and the girls show off their cool new bikes:

Christmas wrap-up

At 2:30 a.m. on Christmas I told my wife to strike a pose that demonstrated how she felt, wrapping gifts until the wee hours:

Here are the girls shortly after they awakened, reading a response to the note left for Santa:

After company arrived, everyone eating and swapping presents:

Thursday, December 18, 2014

6 x 9 inch house portrait, finished yesterday

House portrait in pen and ink
Here's another I finished yesterday.  It's the last one that had a pressing due date of Christmas; now I have one to work one that is an immediate priority because it was paid for long ago, plus a couple of commissions due after the holidays.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Another pen and ink house portrait

I finished this a couple of days ago. It's 11 x 15 inches.  I did not have a chance to get a good scan of it, so this is just a mobile phone photo, so the quality isn't the best--but the details are sharp, which is good, so don't think I'm complaining about my smart phone's camera.

I found this drawing to be challenging in that the values of the grass, bricks, and roof were all very similar, so distinguishing them was difficult.

Wednesday, December 03, 2014


 This dates from 11/26.

My daughters were inspired to do some baking—on their own. Early on Thanksgiving week I helped the younger girl make cream puffs for a school party, and the next day she really wanted to bake some cookies all on her own.  The only things adults did were to get the heavy mixer down for her, and help her get the hot tray out of the oven (and also remind her to clean up after herself).  The cookies did not come out in the shape they were supposed to, but they tasted great.

Immediately after that her older sister wanted to bake some brownies.  She did that all on her own, too, except for occasional requests for advice.  The brownies came out oddly low in quantity, as if there was not enough to cover the pan, even though after review neither my daughter nor I could figure out where there may have been an error.  It seems to me that the recipe was simply wrong.  At any rate, I helped her keep an eye on the brownies in the over, and they actually came out great.  Thin and cookie-like (prompting her to label them “crownies”), but delicious.

I am proud of my bakers!

Monday, December 01, 2014

Cake quality

Likelihood that a homemade cake will be good, even if a mistake is made in the recipe, or it’s burnt: 98%.  Likelihood that a cake that comes in shrinkwrap will be any good: 6%