Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Our ancient ally!

Holy Light, come save my life
Come pull me from the ashes.
If I am wicked now
The world was wicked once to me.

Holy Light, oh, bring me sight
For everything that happened.
I was something good before
And good again I'll be.

Book of Matches IX
- Typhoon

Back to doing Ace Attorney fanart every waking hour!!!!!! Haha yes. As I mentioned, I just found out about attorney badges being real in Japan (I feel like kind of an idiot) and that they're supposed to be a SUNFLOWER!!! Do you know what that means???
...No? Well if you'd played the games you would...

Saturday, January 9, 2016

Fake cookie time

HUUUGE post alert!

Since last Christmas, we have been planning and scheming for making fake cookies for this year! We've put a LOT of work into the venture, as you will see below. When I told my Mom about our plan, this was her response:

"Are they... to trick people?"

What?? Do I really seem so sneaky and fiendish as- oh. I guess I do. But no! Geez! They're for decoration!

Here's the whole run down!

First off, sprinkle substitutes that look like the real ones. I've seen people use ridiculous things like buttons and glitter on their fake decor cookies, and I think that's stupid. REALISM, PEOPLE.

First was seed beads to look like them little sprinkles. Unfortunately, the seed beads came with some wrong colors.

I spent HOURS picking out the bad colors with tweezers. And we also had to specially order pink and purple to add to it!

I'll admit at this point we may be a bit obsessive.

We also got these brown ones, to be those long chocolate sprinkles.

Here's the finished mix.

Not perfect, but still.

Here's the refuse. 

What are those larger dull blue things, you ask? Which brings us to our next type of sprinkles! Those flat round or star-shaped ones! The ones you see here are an early attempt whose color came out wrong. How the heck did I make these, you ask?


Rolled into tiny balls and then flattened, or painstakingly shaped into stars, and left out to harden.

Yes, a LOT obsessive, thank you. I only do things by halves when it's something someone ELSE wanted me to do.

Here's the finished product.

Not all the colors are perfect, but pretty close.

And then there's the colored sugars. The only thing we could think of for that was to add food color and water to salt and then let dry.

It looked pretty good once dried. More on that later.

And then the actual dough!

The recipe we followed was as such:

1 C. Flour
1/2 C. Salt
1/2 C. Water

rolled out

 and cut

 And then baked at 250 for 2 hours.

We had worried that the color would be too light, but were proven wrong. The side that was facing down in the oven especially was good.

Side that had been facing up.

Side that had been facing down.

As you can see, before baking we added a hole for the hook to go in.

And then we made the frosting!

For the frosting itself we made a mix of glue and acrylic paint. For authenticity, we just used white paint, and then divided up and colored with food colors.

We also added almond extract, which turned out to be the most convincing aspect of the finished cookies; the smell! 

So decorating!

Lookin' pretty good!

I messed up on the blossom part of that tulip one first time around, so I was gonna wipe it of with a paper towel and try again, but I found that...

Owing to the glue, slightly drying frosting could be peeled off in its entirety! Weird, huh?

But as you can see on that tulip, we found out the trouble with the colored salt.

It bled its color out onto the frosting. So that didn't really work out very well. Interestingly enough, The green colored salt only seems to have bled out its blue half, and remains yellow. Huh.

But it mostly went well!

Here's the ones Mary made.

Yes they're better than mine. There's no need to be CRUEL. (you can also see there the silver beads we used as edible ball bearings, which I forgot to individually photograph, but were one of the convincing-er of our sprinkle substitutes.)

Here they are after drying overnight.

The frosting got a bit oddly textured, and the playdoh sprinkles picked up a bit of color from it, but it's all good!

Here they are on the tree! Yes the tree is still up! Yes I'm grasping onto Christmas for as long as I possibly can!

What's this one, you ask? No, not the reflection of the photographer in the ornament, you rascals! The cookie!!

Why it's a defense attorney's badge! Which I only just found out are real things in Japan! 

As appearing in Ace Attorney: Dual Destinies

More on that come next post!

I call the fake cookies a success! Not everything went perfectly, but as well as can be expected from the likes of us! Next year we'll know better.
In the meantime, we have a bunch of colored salt to use up.


Thursday, January 7, 2016

The Ghost of Christmas Presents

We're kind of easing our way out of Christmas this year, since getting the tree down will have to wait until the weekend. So Imma keep doing Christmas stuff as long as I darn-well please! So here's a post about presents, and all sorts of great things.

This here hat I knitted for a present for Casey. It is modeled after Mabel's strawberry hat from the Gravity Falls episode Summerween

Screenshot from aforementioned episode
Not really a very CHRISTMAS thing, but still.

Here's a penguin I got in my stocking! I name him масьло. I am consumed with envy for his fine outfit.

Here's something!

Here's a bear decoration I actually got last year. It's basically the best thing ever. Here's why.

Here's a closer look:

You open it up and there's a little bear parade around the treasure chest! It actually turns, as a music box inside plays God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen! What could be finer?

And the grandest decoration:

We didn't have a nativity set last year, which was terrible, but we got us one now! And now here the kings have arrived. Unfortunately there's no shepherd, but, needs must.

And in conclusion:

From Santa this year I received Drumbeat Sound of Death Bear. I first encountered this type of bear some while ago in a thrift store. It had a switch on the back, so I flipped it, expecting music. Instead, there was this... sound. At the time, I could only describe it as sounding like a distant marching and drums, and found it just a little bit frightening. I had NO IDEA what it was supposed to be, and unfortunately, didn't buy the bear. Later, I found out that it was a Womb Sounds Bear, which plays a recording of a mother's heartbeat as heard inside the womb, to the purpose of comforting a newborn baby. At the time I felt kinda bad about having found the noise to be frightening, but then I thought... At the Christmas midnight Mass, in his homily, the priest said that Jesus was the only person ever who "Was born to die," meaning, obviously, that the purpose of the incarnation was the crucifixion, by which Christ won the salvation of mankind. That part is true enough, but I find I disagree with the notion that Jesus was the only one born to die. We are all born to die, or rather, conceived to die. It is in dying that we enter our final reward, thus achieving the purpose of having lived. So do I recant my initial reaction that the sound is frightening? No. Unborn life inside the womb is a beautiful, precious thing, and it is meant to be most nurtured, loved, and safe time during one's life. But it is a devastating fact that many die before ever leaving the womb. This sound is the last thing they hear. For them, this sound accompanied their death, but for all of us, it was the first thing we heard; the sound at the very beginning of life. And whether we survived long enough to leave this sound behind us or not, in ushering us into life, it begins us upon our journey towards death.
It is only by Jesus' death that our death is not the end.

Merry Christmas.