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Monday, August 29, 2016

Birds Nest Inspiration



I occasionally get asked how I come up with an idea for a surprise ball.  

The idea for my newest surprise ball came to me after reading a very interesting article about eagles (in particular, how it flies).  My mind tends to wander when I read - imagining the scenery, the appearance, sounds and smells in the story and of its characters.  

And then my mind makes a total u-turn and I start thinking of semi-related things.  Like how in the heck did they install that Eagle Cam in DC without the eagles knowing!?  I wonder how much that massive nest weighs!? How big is eagle poop? And then finally, I wonder if I could make a bird's nest surprise ball?....

So with that, new to the Watermelon Party shop, here is a Bird's Nest Surprise Ball.


Tucked into it's crepe paper foundation are real twigs, moss and other natural findings.  The bird and its eggs are made of plastic with paper and real feathers.





And in case you were wondering, here is the article that started the idea:

The Upturned Wing Tip of Soaring Birds



A JET plane in flight creates rapidly spiraling swirls of air at the tips of its wings. These vortices cause drag, increasing fuel consumption. They also buffet planes that may be following closely. Thus, flights departing from the same runway must be sufficiently spaced to allow time for the vortices to dissipate.

Airplane engineers have discovered a way to reduce these problems. Their solution? Winglets, inspired by the upturned wing-tip feathers of soaring birds, such as buzzards, eagles, and storks.





An airplane winglet
Consider: During flight, the feathers on the wing tips of those large birds bend upward until they are almost vertical. This configuration balances maximum lift with minimum wing length. It also improves performance. Engineers have designed airplane wings with a similar shape. Using innovative wind-tunnel testing, they found that if the modified wings were precisely curved at the tip and properly aligned with the airflow, they improved aircraft performance—nowadays by up to 10 percent or more. The reason? Winglets minimize drag by reducing the size of the vortices. Moreover, winglets also create a form of thrust that “counteracts some of the normal drag of the airplane,” says the Encyclopedia of Flight.
Winglets thus enable airplanes to fly farther, carry a greater load, have shorter wings—which also facilitates parking—and save fuel. In 2010, for example, airlines “saved 2 billion gallons [7,600 million L] of jet fuel worldwide” and contributed to large reductions in aircraft emissions, says a NASA news release.
What do you think? Did the upturned wing tip of soaring birds come about by evolution? Or was it designed?
AWAKE! FEBRUARY 2015


Saturday, July 23, 2016

Mad Tea Party 2016


Welcome! to the 9th Annual Bloggers Tea Party hosted by A Fanciful Twist.  

This year I held an actual tea party for my children and their friends.  And as usual, I created something new to celebrate the event.  New to Watermelon Party are a 
Watermelon Surprise Ball and a Strawberry Surprise Ball. 
 Each one has at least 6 prizes wrapped within layers and layers of colorful streamers.  


 
On the menu:
Peanut Butter and Jelly French Toast roll ups with powdered sugar 
Whipped Cream Cheese Sandwiches
Flower Shaped Sugar Cookies
Milk Chocolate Frosted Pound Cake
Four different teas and drinks.






Our little guests practice their "pinky finger drinking".  Did you know?...Since ancient Rome, a cultured person ate with 3 fingers, a commoner with five. Thus, the birth of the raised pinkie as a sign of elitism. This 3 fingers etiquette rule is still correct when picking up food with the fingers and handling various pieces of flatware. 


After the tea and snacks they opened their surprise balls.






Thanks for visiting!  Check out other Tea Party goers at AFancifulTwist.com.



Thursday, July 14, 2016

Where Bloggers Create 2016



When I made the decision to move my workspace from the basement to the playroom I must admit, I was a bit overwhelmed.  How was I going to fit everything in a space that measures only about 5 x 7 and was mostly windows and a door?!    With a lot of purging and focus on only the bare necessities, I made it work.  I left completed projects and packing supplies downstairs and brought up only the things that I would use on a regular basis.

The basement was a nice place to work but it was too far from my living space and I felt like I wasn't getting as much work done as I wanted.  With my workspace back upstairs I am able to create and keep an eye on the kiddos.  One side of the room is dedicated to my workspace and the other side is divided off to a play area with toys, costumes, kitchen set and craft supplies.  There is another door on their side so the areas are easily separated.



Most of my own artwork is stored away which allows me to display collections from other favorite artists.  Including some art done by my children.




Live plants (albeit small) help balance the space.  Pruning the leaves and rearranging the small scenes is relaxing and it's a nice break for when I'm having a creative block.  


I surround myself with inspiring and pretty things.  A few of my favorite dolls are from Du Buh Du Designs, Deerfield Farm, Cart Before the Horse and Miss Clara.




 An antique plaster and wood theater is a recent purchase along with the glass glitter letters A-R-T from Wendy Addison.  Every now and then my husband annoyingly switches the letters around to see how long it will take me to notice that I have a RAT or TAR hanging in my room.


One of my favorite art quotes is surrounded by some findings from Parcel, the best store to find unique and nostalgic items.


An easy (and very cheap) way I store and display my paints is by 
using cardboard boxes with the backs and fronts tucked in.  
It takes up hardly any space and it prevents the paint tubes from rolling all over the place while I can easily see the color I want. 




























Thanks for visiting during this years Where Bloggers Create!

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Friday, February 19, 2016

Sweet Girl Sweet Boy


Two new additions to my Sweet Girl Sweet Boy miniatures collection.  Now available in the shop.





Sunday, January 31, 2016

What is a Surprise Ball?

What is a Surprise Ball?  

A Surprise Ball contains prizes (small trinkets, candy, stickers, action figures, etc.) that are wrapped within layers and layers of colorful crepe paper streamers.  The Surprise Ball can be shaped into a ball or other shape.  They are like "individual pinatas" but they are not hollow inside.   One ball can be given to a single person to enjoy or the same ball can be passed around a small group while each person takes a turn unraveling the ball in a game of Pass the Parcel!

Watch the following video to see a surprise ball from Watermelon Party being unraveled!



For more questions about surprise balls from Watermelon Party, visit my FAQ page here.