Sunday, December 22, 2013

Dead Beetle is Lovely

I just want to share this little beetle.  These are common in Brisbane at this time of the year although I cannot find their name anywhere.
This little dead fellow was found when I was walking home and is now having an eternal sleep in a little box.
I love beetles.  Alive ones are always better but I do appreciate and enjoy dead things.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013


Stamps are something that it is hard not to love.  Whether it is a humble potato stamp, store bought stamp, someone else's hand carved handy work, or, best of all, your own hand carved stamp.

I learnt to carve stamps from Kay Watanabe as part of the Hands On Brisbane and truly love the technique and the results.

Today I spent a little time making some more wrap for orders using my own hand carved Your Organ Grinder Anatomy stamps.  I use my stamps to make wrap and tote bags, rather than selling the stamps I carve.

Brain Stamp

Chicken Skeleton Stamp

Microscopes and chickens and brains.  oh my!

Tote Bag

Sunday, December 1, 2013

The Walking Dead E-Course

Anyone else doing/done The Walking Dead E-Course on Canvas?

I've not had a chance to really sit down with the content so I have been waiting.  Today I had the urge so sat myself down and started to read.

I think this article is absolutely fascinating and so worth a read.

On the main topic, though...

Thinking about Self-Actualisation, the idea of Abraham Maslow is also really interesting. When you pursue a creative enterprise you are often seen to be "living the dream."  The truth is the "dream" is a lot of hard work, stress, frustration and headaches!  Maslow studied people he believed to be self-actualised, but were they?Ghandi, Abe Lincoln, Einstein, Beethoven?  Do you think they felt they had achieved what they wanted? Two of those were assassinated and if they kept working would they have achieved more and how much more did they want to achieve.

Maslow says only 2% of the population self-actualise. So I wonder how many who self-actualise feel they have achieved what they wanted? Do they think they go there, or is it just us, looking at them, who think that?

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Caterpillar Chrysalis

Last year a caterpillar did a lot of eating on our Desert Rose and I was wondering whether we'd get any more this year.  A few days later I spotted one, and then another, and this is the story so far...
                                                                Yummy Desert Rose!

                                                             First one starts the process.
Dangle Dangle.  It spent the afternoon like this.

Next day.

The second one decided there was just one good spot on the plant. I told the second one that it should not mess with the first one.  It did not listen.

Dangle dangle. 

No. 2 next to no. 1

A couple of days later. 

Pretty little things.

Devastated!  The first one came loose of the leaf and is hanging by thread and then I noticed a hole in it!  Someone ate the little butterfly.  The other one is still looking okay an I am waiting patiently for it to emerge. They are meant to be in the chrysalis for about 2 has been almost 3.  So perhaps they are both lost?  I wonder if the recent stormy weather has been a factor. 

These are Common Crow butterfly Chrysalises and are common on Oleander.  My Nana used to have these on her Oleander.  I still scour the Oleander looking for them when I go over to her house.

I love seeing bugs on our plants.  This is why you have plants, to have these beautiful bugs.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013


You might already be reading Create and Thrive.  If you aren't I strongly recommend it if you have a handmade business.  This week Jess (blog owner) asked about success in this blog post. Lately I am all over the place with my handmade work, not necessasrily in creativity or creating, or what I am making, but more in how I am feeling about my business and my work in general.  Reading this blog is helping me, a little at a time, to get myself back togther.  This "success" question has really made me think and I am going to put together a little list of what success means to me.  

Monday, July 8, 2013

I Make Stuff

I really like to make things.  I spend most of my time hard at work making something.  I mostly make Anatomy-like this Skin hoop, but I also like to make cute things, quirky things, fun things, edible things and more.

Sometimes I post guides to how I have put something together.  You can find a few little instruction manuals to some of what I do over at Instructables.

Here is me  I even won a little prize for my Terrarium
Instructable.  Yay!

You can even find me teaching some workshops with Hands On Brisbane (in fact I coordinate this program).  But you will more than likely find me learning new crafts at Hands On Brisbane.  Learning new things is my favourite thing about this program.

Hands On Brisbane is held in Brisbane, Australia.Find info here
Our new program will launch quite soon.  We've got Screen Printing, Terrariums, Shrinky Dinks, Block Printing, Stamp Making and much much more.

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Little Diorama

I whipped up this little diorama today from a Richard Scarry book and glue.  The little box is made by paper folding (origami) and the details are all cut out of the book.
It is always nice to spend a little time doing something that is not anatomy though I am now thinking about what I can do with anatomy and a little box.  I would really like to learn to work with watercolours and design some of my own little scenes.  This little box will take up home on my desk where I can see it daily and try to think about something I can do. Nature and science and anatomy inspired, of course ;)

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Sticky Date Pudding

I love dates!  The fresh ones are one of the best things in life, but at about $3 for 7 or 8 of them I don't buy them much.  Packed dates often have a few dates that are not so good and can ruin the entire date experience. 

The perfect solution is to use the packed dates to make Sticky Date Pudding.  The recipe for this one was found on Pinterest, here  Pinterest is a great recipe resource.

This pudding was accompanied by a Treacle sauce instead of the usual caramel.  The treacle sauce is 2 tbsp treacle in a saucepan, heating, add 1 tbsp brown sugar and 1 tbsp butter and let those dissolve. Then add approx 2tbsp cream, stir through and warm.  Let everyone get their own sauce :)


Thursday, February 14, 2013

What I did today.

Thursdays are my full day off work and I try to use them as effectively as I can to get work done for Your Organ Grinder.  These days I sit at my desk and watch my tiny little tv.  Today my viewing was "Cheese Slices,"  the tv series about cheese, and Escape From New York, the movie with Kurt Russel as Snake Plisskin and, of course, my regular viewing, Prisoner, the 80's aussie drama set in a womens prison.

During my work time I started adding anatomy to a HUGE bear I am working on for someone, sketched an archaeoptryx and worked on some hearts.

How do you spend your making days?

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Feeding the Geese

My Partner and I have started taking chicken seed down to the pond near his place.  We have been feeding it to the geese who very quickly realised what the shaking container means.
Almost instantly a couple of them ate from our hands. The other ducks and birds in the area also come over for some seed, including my favourites, the wood ducks.
During the horrible weather last weekend, one of the geese was injured and has since disappeared.  Before that a duck (pet looking duck) was also hanging out in their group.  He has also disappeared.  So just the 3 geese now.

They are very funny when they hiss, bob their heads, and waggle their tails.  Anyone know what these displays are all about?

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Chicken with a bad sinus?

 I've had a little trouble with my Chook, Lenny, recently.  Lenny came down with a very watery and mucousy eye. I took him to the vet the day after finding his watery eye and the vet diagnosed a respiratory infection.  A week later Lenny's eye had cleared up but around the eye had become puffy.  My vet did some research on the problem and came to the conclusion Len had a sinus infection and potentially an impacted sinus.  Len stayed on his antibiotics and despite my worries he was going to need surgery (or potentially to be euthanised), his vet gave him a fairly promising outlook today and thinks that things should return to normal but to be vigilant of the eye area and that this kind of problem will certainly recur. 

Happy days for Lenny I think!

Lenny and the ladies (Lola, in the front, and Snotty)

Me sitting with Lenny when he had to have his antibiotics.  He is having a little bit of a sleep.  

Monday, January 28, 2013

Creating an Ear Drum

My current project is making an Eardrum.  I first made an eardrum a few years ago as a custom order.  The process of creating the eardrum for that order was long and I was asked to re-make a lot of things as they weren't perfect.  As the first time was such a task I was never very keen to make another one, even though it has always been on the list.

This year I am tackling a lot of new projects and new ways of designing pieces so thought it was time to give the ear drum a second go.

The process is going well, though slowly, and much more relaxed than the original piece. I like all of the little parts to it, it is like building something.