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Jenny Wright

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since Jul 17, 2018
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Zone 6 in the Pacific Northwest
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Recent posts by Jenny Wright

I think the fact that each damaged leaf has a web or string to it suggests spider mites. If they get out of control, they will kill your tree. A couple of years ago I had spider mites kill two pears and three plums before I figured out what was wrong. These were 1" trees about 6' tall. My well established 10' pear tree suffered damage but was strong enough to survive and recovered in the spring after the winter killed off the mites. I noticed some signs of infestation on different trees this past spring and after the blossoms were done, I used some soap and essential oils to help my trees fight the teeny tiny attackers.
4 weeks ago
I've always visualized the calendar year as a circle in my head so when I started teaching my children about the seasons and months of the year, I drew a big circle on poster board and divided it into twelve slices for the months and colored it according to the seasons. It just makes sense.

I think it's interesting and usable to have the days of the week going inward in the OPs design but it bugs my brain a little bit. But I guess it would be pretty unwieldy to have 365 days in a row going around in a circle, the way my brain naturally pictures time.

As a side note, when I lived in Taiwan for a few months, I was unaware at first that they use a different year counting system (ROC- Republic of China) in addition to using the Gregorian calendar for months and days. A friend of mine asked for help cleaning expired canned and boxed food from their pantry and I threw almost everything away thinking that the packages were over a decade old because the expiration date on most (but not all) packages was the ROC calendar. 😆
2 months ago

r ranson wrote:
I really need to get my own copy.  I've put it on my wishlist, but it's expensive in Canada, so I'm hoping to find it second hand one day.  

😂 I haven't quite checked out library's copy THAT much. The adult edition is on my thrift hunting wish list list too.  I was so excited to find the kids' book at a children's consignment sale last year. My husband and my friends did not understand why I was so excited.
2 months ago
I usually grab a few fuchsias when they get stuck in the clearance section at the store every spring.  This year, the random variety I grabbed actually made giant juicy fruit!

The fruit is rather insipid- slightly sweet and mildly green tasting so we mostly ignored it all summer.  Somehow one of my kids missed the memo that it was edible and hadn't touched it all summer until today.  She thought the taste was meh but immediately tried some different things with it.  

This is what she discovered-
It colors your skin a lovely vibrant fuchsia color!
Rubbed on sidewalk, it's more of a greyish purple.
Squeezed into water (with some mint leaves for flavor), it turned the water a deep royal blue.  It was gorgeous!
When she added some citric acid, the water turned a bright pink!  

My first thought is, Yay! It's like the butterfly pea flower, only I can actually grow this successfully!  I'm wondering if it could be dried and powdered and used as a food color in frosting and baked goods.  The flavor is so mild that you can't taste it added to water.

I'm also very curious what color it would end up dying different fibers and how colorfast it might be.  

Sorry, I didn't think to take pictures and we don't have any more fuchsia berries at the moment.  Hopefully we will get a few more to experiment with before the frost.

Has anyone played around with these before?
2 months ago
I love this book. It has a chapter so about making charcoal- just the basics of prepping the wood, the container, the fire.
2 months ago
I am loving all these various details about haw to make drawing quality charcoal. It's one of those things that's been on my to-do list for a few years.

It sounds like one can really experiment a lot with all the variables- wood choice, thickness, temperature, even soaking it in different solutions first. We are studying chemistry this year in our homeschool and  this would be a fun STEAM project for us.

The only thing I can add new to the conversation is my experience drawing with charcoal. OP asked how long a stuck of charcoal lasts. For the skinny, soft sticks of charcoal, I could use 1/2 to 1 while stick per drawing session. The large, harder sticks, well, I went through only two the whole semester I took a drawing class in college and I was drawing with them almost every day on large 2'x3' pieces of newsprint as well as in a smaller sketch book.
(I know this because I was making individual art supply boxes for my kids yesterday and found my original package of charcoal from college in the back of a drawer.)
2 months ago
Nice! The hippos look really fun!
2 months ago

Inge Leonora-den Ouden wrote:

r ranson wrote:New question.

Is there some sort of graphite paper that will erase?   I want to sketch the design on paper then trace it onto the watercolour block, but the transfer paper I have doesn't erase if I make an error.

When I want to transfer a traced drawing (or something) I don't use carbon paper. I trace on transparent paper (like the kind for sewing patterns), then I trace the lines at the backside with a soft black graphite pencil, I place it (right side up) on the paper where I want it and then trace the lines again with pencil. This will give a soft and erasable transfer.

Yes this or you can just color all over the back of your sketch or picture and then you just trace over the front and the graphite from the pencil on the back will leave a very light outline for you.
3 months ago
I really like a pepper called cherry bomb. They are sweet with a little spice and small and ripen in my short cooler summer.

Last summer I tried some new peppers and I must have planted some crossed seeds this summer because my cherry bombs are 3xs the size they normally are and a little lumpy looking. They are also slower to ripen this year so I haven't tasted them yet.
How are unripe are they? Pears often are picked unripe and will ripen on a counter or shelf.
3 months ago