Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Merry Christmas 2014!

Hello everyone from the fairies and the Powell Girls, as they are wishing you bloggers all around a Merry Christmas.

This year, Cordelia sets up the Christmas lights with help from Felicia, for she is a lot of help due to her size and willingness to decorate.  

Rose loves the giant wreath best of all on the front door. Cordelia however isn't as interested.

She'd rather frolic in the snow with her snowman friends. They only appear once a season to wish her happy holidays. This time they decide to carry Cordelia around the yard while cheering.

 …Along comes Felicia and WHOOSH! She blows them over by hooting a joyous hoot. No one is hurt.

Meanwhile inside, Rose bakes up a delicious pie. Of course, she wears the confident expression bakers use to say, "My cooking is perfection." Would you like some? I think it's apple. 

Cordelia receives a new book for Christmas. This year, she couldn't wait unit Christmas morning to open her present. Jasper the cat reads with her. He finds the book a very good cat toy. 

The Pickering family has recently traveled to China and bought back a beautiful tea set for Rose as a Christmas present. They are her new pride and joy and will now be used at future tea time events. 

Oh, dear! The snowmen outside have been partying happily until Jasper tackles one. It's just good natured fun and play. Don't worry.  

Cordelia decided to abandon her hot coco to whoever should come along and sit with the Santa pillow.  Perhaps Rose will finish it while she knits, or Felicia will peck at it. I think it's too small for Felicia to sample.   

Friday, January 24, 2014

Christmas and Making Minis

Hi, everyone! I'm sorry I haven't blogged in so long, but school has controlled my mind, so all I could think of was work, work, work! (it's a little like zombies thinking of brains all the time, but who knows. Maybe they only want to build a miniature graveyard instead of eating brains). Ok, back to the point. Anyway, I finally have time to blog because of the strange weather we're having in Alaska. Today, school was canceled on account of an ice storm, but it's 41 degrees out! Very strange, but I'm thankful all the same since I get to do projects all the while! 

The fairies don't mind the weather, since I make sure their weather is normal. However, it's very hard to make weather accurate on a dollhouse lawn. Right now, the fairies have snow, but it doesn't look to be melting. However, the fairies don't seem to care, since they love the outdoors.

Ever since it snowed, Cordelia built 4 jolly snowmen to keep her company. They love to form a conga line and dance to their hearts' content on every snowy day!

Unfortunately, I couldn't do the Christmas blog in December. However, I thought everyone would like to see the pictures for Christmas anyway, since they bring everyone good cheer, no matter the season!

Rose loves to decorate the house for any occasion, so she put up christmas lights that can turn on easily. I like to turn them on in the dark.

On Christmas Eve, Cordelia sneaked downstairs to peek at the presents. She knew Stella (the poodle) wouldn't tattle on her.

Rose and Cordelia worked side by side while making these petite gingerbread houses. The saying,"great minds think alike" must be true with the fairies, since both houses look very similar.

For breakfast on Christmas morning, Cordelia had berries and hot chocolate, as well as homemade rolls.

This is the Pickering family. They were one of the best Christmas presents I've ever received, and as soon as I finish the Lily, this cherished family will be moving right in. For now, they will visit the fairies. (From left to right; Ezra, Edward, Rebecca, and Charlotte with baby Morina).

 Christmas time is the best with minis. 

Besides making things for the holidays, I've also been working on making food to go on the dining room table for the Lily.  This is a roast pigeon dish that is meant to be the main course. I varnished the meat after putting a little bit of gold  and brown paint on it. The paint was applied after I baked the clay, but rubbing alcohol has to be applied before the paint, otherwise it won't stick.    
This is the whole feast. Rose and Cordelia have invited their new alien friends to dine with them. "We come in peace while eating!" 

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Craft-O-Rama 2 (by Hannah)

 I know I haven't blogged in a long time, but I'm glad I have the opportunity now. Summer has come, and gone. Even fall is ending, though Halloween wasn't too long ago. In Alaska, snow has already fallen, and I'm a little disappointed of that because I had just gotten the mini fall leaves for my dollhouse lawn. I had wanted my lawn to match the Orchid's lawn, but the seasons in Alaska aren't normal compared to the rest of the USA. When I first finished the Orchid, I had decided that its' climate wouldn't be Alaska's. I thought it was very strange to have the Orchid surrounded by flowers in the spring, but that it was still snowing and 10 degrees below zero in Alaska. 

I could rant on, and on about how strange and disoriented the weather is in Alaska, but that would just be boring. You're mainly here to see pictures of minis and other things, not just words. With that said, I present you the sweet images of a typical mini day in fall.


The chickens have been having a lovely time frolicking about, and pecking at the fall leaves. Two of them love to sit on the pumpkins, and acorns. Unfortunately, one of them has gotten into a bit of a pickle (or should I say, a bit of an acorn). 

Cordelia and Rose have been spending their time outside as much as possible. Cordelia loves to look at the leaves, and sometimes she drags the outdoors in with her. Rose always has to brush her off after raking the leaves. 

Rose loves to cook, and she loves to celebrate Halloween with some sweets. All in all, she loves to have small parties to celebrate any holiday. I made everything on the table except the flowers in the vase, and the two cheese platters (those were made by Ayi Chris). I was inspired by her darling cheese platters to make one of my own. The one I made is the one farthest to the right. 

Here comes Felisha 'round the corner! She loves to visit often, but has a hard time visiting due to her enormous size. She sometimes startles Rose when she seems to be a giant, furry owl lurking around a corner of the house.

Rose has baked some more lovely cakes. The pink one with white icing looks very Spring-like, and the large, layered chocolate cake looks to be very rich. I think it should be called, "Death by Chocolate." The small, white cake in the very back seems to have a delectable cherry filling.

The table is set for afternoon tea. Come and get it while it's hot, and the cake is fresh out of the oven! The table is set for two, probably for Rose and Cordelia. Another thing Rose likes to do besides cooking, is to drink tea and eat her homemade cakes.

As I've said before, the fairies love to spend their time outside. They love all seasons, but fall is particularly their favorite. Maybe because they love how the leaves go with the color scheme of the house. We'll never know, but we know the chickens feel the same happiness of being outside as the fairies do. Their favorite thing to do is to sit in Cordelia's, or Rose's lap and think about things. 

The inside of the Orchid isn't as colorful, or as fall-like as the outside, but I put some pumpkins inside as well as out. You can find them in and around different parts of the house. There is even a pumpkin on the sink in the bathroom.

It took a long time, but I eventually started preparing for fall. This picture shows me making the petite pumpkins, and other fall delicacies for the fairies to eat. 

I hope that poor chicken will be able to get her head unstuck.   

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Craft-O-Rama: Part 1

Alas, it has been a long time since any of us have blogged. 

The three of us PowellGirlz got together in Ohio a few weeks ago and had a wonderful time making all kinds of things including miniature food, punch-needle embroidery, knitted monsters, and glass vases — a veritable Craft-O-Rama!   

We agreed at the end of our visit that we would each blog about a different craft. Unfortunately, we have all gone back to work and school — suddenly time is slipping by without any blogging (and not too much creating) going on.  I (Abby) took on the glass-blowing blog; Hannah and Chris will write about more later.

As Chris mentioned in a previous post, she visited her son and daughter-in-law in California and got to watch them blowing glass.  She sent me a little video of the process as well as lots of photos. Hannah lamented that she really wanted to learn glass-blowing, but I didn't think that people her age would be allowed in a glass studio. A few weeks later we were planning our trip to visit her, and she just happened to find a coupon for a glass-blowing class at a glass studio in Cincinnati! She contacted them and found out that Hannah could take a class, so she signed us all up. We decided to try making vases.

We were given a demonstration by our instructor and it looked so hard that we let Chris go first...   

Chris starting to make her vase. The hot ovens are seen behind her. She is adding air while turning the molten glass.

We started by collecting glass from an extremely hot oven (the instructor did this part for us). Then we took the molten glass and rolled it to begin shaping, and added some air through the long metal tube (this was more difficult than we thought it would be).  

Soon it was time to add color by gently twirling the hot glass in what looked like little crumbles of colors. Chris chose reds (with black and white accents), I chose greens, and Hannah chose multi-colors.  

We continued the process of reheating, twirling the glass, and adding air until it was time to shape the bottoms and tops of the vases. We did this part at a special bench.

The bench was where we were closest to the glass, which was incredibly hot. We wore a thick leather glove and a protective sleeve for this part.

Finally, the vase was very carefully broken off the rod (thank you, instructor!) and then transferred to the "cooling" oven (900 F!) and slowly cooled over a period of 24 hours. When we last saw our vases they were still red hot, so we couldn't really see the colors as they would appear in the end. I can't post a photo of the final vases here because Hannah wanted to be surprised when we receive ours in the mail.  However, I have seen the photos Chris took after she picked them up a week later and they look fantastic —check back here later to see the final products!  

We were really sad to leave after having such a great time, but we will always remember our wonderful Craft-O-Rama! Thanks to Chris, the hostess with the most-est, who not only took us to a miniature show, showed us how to do punch needle embroidery, and took us on wonderful hikes, but also managed to find us a glass-blowing class!  

We can't wait for the next PowellGirlz extravaganza!

Monday, August 5, 2013

And the results are in!

Friday I got a surprise phone call from the fair. At first I was wondering why an adult I didn't even know was calling me, but then I found out that I had won a grand champion ribbon because of my Orchid dollhouse. I was excited and a little sad when I found out that I wasn't able to attend the awards ceremony because I would be in Ohio at that time. 

We went to the fair on Saturday, and I was surprised yet again! I had won another grand champion ribbon, this time for the PJs that I had made! This is the first time that I have won any grand champion ribbons, let alone 2 of them! 

I also won a first place ribbon, and a class champion ribbon (shown on the right side of the dollhouse). The grand champion ribbon is on the left.

I especially love how the people displayed the Orchid. The front of the dollhouse can be seen clearly through the window. 


This is me with my flower shirt. Since this shirt was much more complicated to make than the PJs, my mom and I were surprised that the simple PJs won the class champion, instead of the shirt.

My room looks so empty and lonely without the dollhouse! The only thing on my dollhouse table is some of the furniture from the Orchid and the giant lawn. Luckily, the fair is over on Sunday, and I'll have my dollhouse back! 

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Proud Auntie, Proud Mom

I am so happy for Hannah and so proud of her! But, the news is hers so I will leave you in suspense until she posts her own blog. 

I returned home a few days ago from a visit with my son and his sweetie in San Francisco. I had a wonderful time visiting with them! They are both glass artists and I thoroughly enjoyed an afternoon with them in the glass studio watching them work, and even getting to help blowing the glass a couple of times. I had seen videos of Dale Chihuly at work, but have never been to a glass studio and seen glass blowing in action before. Caleb and Masayo are a team in all ways, and it was a pleasure to watch them work together on their art glass. 

It was both hard to leave San Francisco and nice to be home. 

Now it is time to get back to organizing at home, getting my classroom ready for the upcoming school year, playing music, and working on minis. I bought materials to make a couple of fire places for the Lily, but I need to reorganize my work area first.

I'm looking forward to Hannah's next post!

~ Chris

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

I'm Leaving...

On a jet plane...

Off to San Francisco tomorrow to visit my son and daughter-in-law. I'm looking forward to the visit, but not the trip since I am not a happy flier.

Before leaving, I wanted to take the Lily back down again. I had moved it around a bit and the walls were getting somewhat out of alignment. I didn't want to have the wood warp in the humidity, especially when it was off kilter. Before taking her down though, I wanted to mark where the wiring would go, should I accept the challenge, and measure the height of the fireplaces I want to build for her when I get back from San Francisco. 

I think it will work to have the housing under the porch and have the wiring come in through the kitchen.

I'm planning to build fireplaces for the end of the bedroom wall and for the attic wall just above it, so the chimney will come up through the center of the house.

Now that that's all done, she's re-deconstructed and tucked back into her box until I return home.

One of my objects for today has been to stay busy and distract myself from fretting about flying, so I also worked on the exterior of the Fairy House. I still need to put moss on the side eaves and hinge the doors. and of course there is endless landscaping and yard work to be done.

I am hoping TSA lets me bring my embroidery as part of my carry-on. I guess it's up the the individual TSA officer. I have been able to bring my knitting along on previous flights. While I was working on my punch needle rugs, I thought that would be a great way to stay concentrated and occupied on a long flight. Then I realized how much I could get into the personal space of whoever has the misfortune to have the seat next to mine as I separated the strands of embroidery floss. So, in preparation for staying entertained on the plane, I have been separating the floss in advance and putting the precut, pre-separated strands in little plastic bags.

I have more colors to do this evening. That should keep me busy!

~ Chris