Friday, February 27, 2009

Old photos of bliss...

I finally got around to scanning some old photos today. Who the heck is this kid? Lol, that's me at my aunts house with a friend I made there. I just love looking at old photos, (even if they're of people I don't know. Is that weird?)

My great grandpa and me at his farm.

Me on our little farm. I think I was about nine here. I was always surrounded by critters - cats, dogs, chickens or me that was pure bliss. (Can you tell?) To this day this is one of my favorite pictures of me.

Look at this! My father in the '40s with what looks to be a litter of Rat Terrier pups!!! :-)

One of my favorite old photos ever - My great grandpa (left) at his farm leaning against a fence that he built. I really love this picture, it just screams "Good Ole Days!"

Friday, February 20, 2009

Achieving Cookie Nirvana...

When I saw the recipe for these cookies, I was intrigued. It said for perfect chocolate chip cookies that stay moist and chewy, you need to melt the butter first before you mix it with the sugar and eggs:

"...when butter is melted, free water and fat are separated from each other. When this melted butter is combined with flour, the proteins in the flour grab the water and each other to immediately form elastic sheets of gluten. This creates a product with a chewy texture. At the same time, the sugars and fats are working to inhibit gluten formation, which prevents the cookies from getting too tough."

Ok, science is fun! The other tips were to add an extra egg yolk, and - very important - let them cool completely on the cookie sheet - do NOT move to a wire rack!

I used sucanat (dehydrated cane juice) in place of all the sugar, and used a quarter cup less than what was called for (some of the reviews said the cookies were too sweet,) other than that I followed the recipe to the letter. (If you use sucanat, note that it doesn't mix as creamy as regular brown sugar.)

Being the good foodie that I am, I want the best ingredients I can find. That's not important to everyone, but I'm pretty sure I've said before on this blog that I'd cut back on electricity before I cut back on the quality of my food. It's one of my passions...

If you've never used real vanilla, spend the extra few bucks and try it. You'll never go back to imitation.

Melting the butter. Yes, that's the old Visions cookware. I love it! They don't make it anymore, but I find it on ebay or at Goodwill.

Cookie dough bliss!!!

Letting them cool on the sheet. As promised, they stayed soft and chewy and are the best chocolate chip cookies I've ever tasted anywhere in my life. Cookie Nirvana has been achieved!

Cookie-face here was an accident. I think the oven mitt brushed against a hot chip or something. You can see the sucanat. It looks rustic. Or, in this case, like freckles. I couldn't stand the way this cookie was giving me the stink-eye. He was the first to go.

Here is the entire recipe, pretty straightforward, maybe a little more vanilla than the norm, but that's another plus. Chewy and Thick Chocolate Chip Cookies If anyone tries this recipe, or even tries the tips (melting the butter and leaving the cookies on the sheet to cool) with their old standby choc chip recipe, let me know how it turns out!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Wordless Wednesday - copper and orange (more patio lights for Jessica)

(I know it's Wordless Wednesday, just wanted to let you know that these are my hubby's beautiful eyes.)

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Angry BBQ is angry...

Come on, Angry BBQ. I have Spring fever too, but February in the Midwest means that it can be 60 degrees one day, and the next day we can have our biggest snowfall of the year. I know it's cold Angry BBQ, but just look around you at how beautiful it is...come with me and lets walk around the back yard...

I've never seen the patio lights look so lovely!

The sky looks so blue today.

Everything wears a cloak of white...

that could fall off at any moment.

Logs become figures lying in the snow.

Meditation Bench is meditating.

The simplest things are stunning if you stop to look at them.

Stand under the pergola and look up. Why Angry BBQ, is that a smile?????

See, Angry BBQ, it's a beautiful day.
Lets enjoy the snow. Spring will be here before we know it.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Inner Wolf

I took this photo during a walk with Cloud a couple days ago, because I loved how wolf-like his shadow looked. Such a contrast to my sweet and cuddly little pal, it was a glimpse of his inner wolf. I thought it was pretty cool.

I want to thank everybody again for your outpouring of support for the loss of my sweet Benny. Your comments and emails and kind words were so appreciated. I love the sense of community that I've found in blogging, hugs to you all. I miss him so much and the house feels so empty, but everyday it hurts a little less.

I don't really deal very well with death. I feel like I should handle it better, because I know absolutely that there is more to us than these bodies, and I know that Benny is not really gone. I just get so attached, and I think another part of it is that I feel things SO strongly. I think a lot of you artists can seems to be part of the creative personality. Of course the upside to that is also the ability to feel outrageous joy over even the littlest things, so I embrace it fully.

Much love,

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

So hard to say goodbye

I had to say goodbye to my dear old friend last night. Benny was going on 15 and had a good long life. He died in my arms at home. It feels so empty without him here.

Rest easy, Benny Bean. I hear there is unlimited steak and cookies at the Rainbow Bridge. I miss you so much, Old Man. I will always love you.
This is so hard.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Some sketches...

eagle sketch, Kathleen Coy
Eagle sketch.

My friend Jen at Gypsy Mare Studios posted some lovely sketches and asked to see a peek at other artists sketchbooks. I don't sketch as much as I probably should. I need to work on that because I do enjoy it. Some of these are a few years old.

wolf sketch, Kathleen Coy

Quick little wolf study.

polar bear sketch, Kathleen Coy

I love polar bears! I think her head looks too small.

sketches of my dog and cat

Cloud and Boomer.

Tiger sketch by Kathleen Coy

Another tiger sketch by me

Tiger morph sketch by Kathleen Coy

Some tigers. The last one is a self-portrait pastel sketch of my hidden tiger (or was that crouching tiger?) Yes, I was a blond then. I'm not crazy about working with pastels - can't stand how messy they are, so I admire people who create with them.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

More progress on Hawk the rat terrier

If you remember, this is where we left off.

I started playing with the new paints (Golden Open) on the background, and I am still in love! It would have taken me hours to get this look with the old formula (Golden Heavy Body.) What you see here is just one layer that I painted on top of the underpainting. I'm crazy about how easily this paint blends!

The painting as it stands now. I'm working on darkening his muzzle and starting on his shoulder and collar. The photos make it look a little bit darker than it really is.