Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Why we Keep Cheryl out of the Kitchen!

It was a simple task: Bake the yummy pumpkin bread that the store sells. It even came in a prepackaged assembly so all you had to do was add the eggs and mix it up. How could anyone mess that up? Well, Cheryl found a way. At first I thought I smelled something burning, but there was supposedly all this time left on the oven. Well, Upon opening the oven, black smoke bellowed out and instead of fragrant fresh baked pumpkin bread, there was the billowing black clouds of burnt carbon throughout the apartment. Cheryl had filled the bread tins too full with the batter and they bubbled over onto the heating element. Naturally I had to come to the rescue and I got blamed for it for not seeing the "flaw" in her baking technique before the disaster. Ah well! After a good chuckle, we cleaned it up and finished the last batch without incident. Despite the drama, the bread still managed to taste pretty good. So it all worked out in the end...like the season finale of exosquad. ( Sgt Frog Reference) The lesson learned is make sure Cheryl has supervision in the kitchen. ( Like me doing laundry) Anyway, some new Origami. A Whale and a lobster. Enjoy!

Thursday, January 26, 2012

My Latest in the Origami World

Last night Cheryl and I made some more paper and I realized that I have not posted any pics of my latest works. So ...here they are. I have been working on the Robert Lang Tree Frog for a couple of weeks now and I think this is one of the best so far. It is actually fairly easy to do now that I know the theory behind it. One recommendation to new Origami fans: Have good paper and fold the same design several times in a row to gain a sense of familiarity with it. Your skill, knowledge and feeling for the design and art will only get better. The Grackles are such an example. I would like to work on this design a couple more times to fix the head. But first I will have to cut up the paper I made last night. Hope everyone is having a great week so far.

Monday, January 23, 2012

New Color Designs...Continued!....with some Origami.

We are continuing to flesh out the color palette and the designs before ACT starts up. With a little luck and some determination, we should have the entire lay out ready for pictures before the end of the month. We shall see what our motivation levels are like after a day of Grading. In other news, I have been working on some Origami....I have not taken many pictures of them and I don't really have a place to leave them...as we do not go to Panera everyday as we once did. So...it's more of the same. Make stockings, and prepare for next Christmas. It is a long and rather boring path...but one we are determined to follow. Hope everyone is surviving the winter....Here in Iowa, the weather does not want to make up its mind. Sometimes it is cold, other days, almost warm. What fun!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

New Designs! NEW COLORS!

So we finally received our new colors...and what a show! Slightly brighter than last years, these are sure to make an impression. It is a little bit on the risky side for us, as we are not sure if anyone else will enjoy the colors as we do. But for now, we will be working on creating the prototypes in each color and then going from there. As for the old designs: We are keeping a few unchanged and are working on the production part for them. The goal is to make 20 stockings a day for 200 days. ( For those bad at math, that is 4000 stockings for the year) After doing the calculating for the surface area of the stock, we have determined that the entire collection will fit in our bedroom stacked in these boxes up to the ceiling. Cheryl is very excited! We are a little behind in production mode at the moment, but there should be more time as the year progresses to keep the pace going. As for now...enjoy the colors!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

New Stockings...and Iowa Snow....Blowing Snow...Blowing and Drifting snow...

Cheryl and I have been trying to get into the habit of making 20 stockings every night for our new goal for 2012. The Year of the Dragon....Year of Successful business and all of that. Anyway! We have our designs now and now it is time behind the tool...so to say. That is: Time to make the donuts! We have to develop the habit of making at least 20 of some design every day. The MINIMUM is 4000 stockings by November. Not that bad of a goal since 20 stockings take us about 4 hours everyday to complete. And it is fun! In addition to that....there is now snow. Not the fluffy fun stuff...but the powdery cold stuff that blows and stings your skin. A great time to hole up and hide out in our toasty apartment making those stockings. So far we are almost done with the green Rudolphs. But there are 13 other designs to make and several more colors that are not even seen here. I can hardly wait to place my next button order! Hope everyone else is surviving the winter weather. As for us...It's cold here so we are working on staying warm...

Monday, January 9, 2012

Origami Bugs....with New Paper! And New Stocking Design for 2012.

It is unfortunate that the camera could not take find the conditions right for the picture taking, but we will pull through. Anyway, with the new found time we have acquired after the season rush..I have made some new paper to fold up. Not to mention Cheryl gave me several new origami books to play with. Some are rather advanced and I regret that my calculus skills are rusty tot he point of incomprehensible. ( that means I have forgotten almost everything about Calc one and two!) So when they put in a logarithm for the folding ratios, I recognize the symbols, but forget what they mean....However! I can still read and look at pictures, And can still follow the design steps, so I can at least figure out some new things without knowing all of the science behind it. So, A few of Robert Lang's designs, along with some of Michael G. LaFosse. As well as a few from my own collection. I really like the way the beetle turned out, unfortunately it is rather blurry ( thanks camera!) In addition, we have been working on the 2012 collection of stocking designs. We set our goal to make 20 stockings a day until November, but so far we are a little behind. But the designs are coming! We have a mouse, skunk, new squirrel, and several new birds! As well as a new stocking design and several new felt colors! I received my button order and can't wait to start production. Getting started is the hardest part. Other than that, they are cutting down the last tree in the back yard today. And there has not been any snow yet this year ( yeah!) I don't really miss the snow much, but it is still pretty windy and cold. Ah well, Perhaps I can survive another year in Iowa. One of the upstairs tenants have left already this year. Hope everyone else is having a great 2012 so far! I'll try to blog more often.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Happy New Year!

It's been a while since my last post and I thought that I should at least post something in the early parts of the new year. Well the resolutions are out and one of them i, of coarse, to lose the holiday weight. It's not as bad as it could have been .. all that late night snacking on all those high energy foods. but it is bad enough for me to take notice..and that is not good. So, Cheryl and I are back on the plan ( hopefully) that allowed us to get back down to pre-Iowa weight. We shall see if we can make it work. In addition, We want to make Allenbrite Even more successful than last year. We have a plan. And now we have to stay focused enough to implement it. Already we are slow off the start, but there is a whole year ( don't lose focus!) to get those stockings made and work on new designs. I was able to place an order for some more buttons today so that should help us get a little motivated. 2012 is the year of the dragon...The Chinese consider the Year of the Dragon to be a good time for people to get married, have children or begin a business venture as the year tends to bring good fortune and happiness. Business should go well and people will make money more easily. Dragons are people who like to spend money and have an all-or-nothing attitude, often putting aside caution. Hopefully we can let up on the all or nothing attitude a bit...bit then again, Playing things safe is a slow, boring death. Hope every one's year goes as well as they would like.


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