Mural, Mural, on the Wall...

I realized the other day that I've never shown you any of the murals I've done.
So here's a little tour...

This is a mural I did in a local pediatrics office.
Each of the buildings included is a local historic site,
and as you can see, the landscape transitions through the four seasons
along the length of the wall.

Rocky Mount, Piney Flats, TN.
Detail: as you can see, there are lots of little critters hidden throughout the mural
to keep the kids occupied and distracted while waiting to see the doctor!

Tipton Haynes, Johnson City, TN.
This wall is about 45 feet long and 9 feet tall. It took me 2 weeks to paint this mural.
The grass alone took one full day.

Knob Creek Church of the Brethren, Johnson City, TN.
Fall, my favorite season...

The Covered Bridge, Elizabethton, TN.

Below is another mural in another local pediatrics office.
As you can see, this one is much more stylized.
(Please ignore the blue painters' tape.)

This wall is about 65 feet long by 9 feet high.
This mural took 3 weeks to complete.

Below is a castle mural that I did in a private residence.
The boy who lives in this room loves knights and castles...
This was my first mural ever, incidentally.

Below is a little decorative accent mural that I did in another private residence.
By adding shadows behind the ivy, I made the leaves seem as if they are popping off of the wall.

Below are two nurseries I did for the same family -
after they moved to a new house, I came and did the same mural again in their daughter's nursery.

The Poky Little Puppy

A business logo I did in their storefront...

Below is a "rug" I painted on an unfinished wooden floor. After I painted, they varnished over the top.

The rest of these are from a retreat center in Buladean, NC.
As you can see, words alone can be lovely murals.

If you are interested in commissioning a mural or have any further questions,
please e-mail me! If you are local, I offer free estimates and on-site consultation. If you are further away, I am happy to look at your photos and room dimensions and discuss your project with you over the phone.
Of course, if you'd like to fly me to some exotic and wonderful location,
you're more than welcome to do that too. :o)

For more information on murals & pricing, please visit my website, and go to the "Information > Pricing" tab.
A mural would make a fantastic and unique Christmas gift!


Drumroll, please....

The Thanksgiving Giveaway drawing is over! The winner has been selected!

I received over 100 entries! Wow!
Thank you all so much for participating -
I really enjoyed reading all of your comments
and checking out some of your own lovely blogs...

Using small slips of paper mixed up in a Chinese hat the most
modern and scientific methods available,
I selected the winner tonight,
after a wonderful day of giving thanks with family...

and the winner is....


Congratulations! Please e-mail me with your mailing address,
but first, visit my online store to pick out which print you would like...
You may select any 5x7 or 5x5 art print or photograph you see there -
just let me know what to send, and I'll get that in the mail next week!

Thank you all so much for your very kind comments
and for taking the time to visit this little blog...

Today, I am thankful for all of you!

Hope you all had a wonderful and blessed Thanksgiving!

Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all ye lands.
Serve the LORD with gladness:
come before His presence with singing.
Know ye that the LORD He is God:
it is He that hath made us, and not we ourselves;
we are His people, and the sheep of His pasture.
Enter into His gates with thanksgiving,
and into His courts with praise:
be thankful unto Him,and bless His name.
For the LORD is good;
His mercy is everlasting;
and His truth endureth to all generations.

Psalm 100



...after 11 hours of paint fumes, grocery shopping at Wal-Mart in the wee hours of the a.m., and putting them all away...

So, the giveaway winner will be drawn and announced tomorrow... sorry for the delay! I'm super tired!

Tonight (or rather, this morning), I am thankful for a hot shower and a warm bed! See you tomorrow! Happy Thanksgiving!



Well, it's been a long couple of days for me...

Quick reminder: Tomorrow's the last day to enter my Thanksgiving Giveaway! I will be doing the drawing tomorrow night - can't give you an exact time - depends when I get home from a painting job I'm doing -- but it will probably be between 9-10 PM EST. So click here to enter! A print would make a lovely Christmas gift!

Anyway, I wanted to pop in to give you my thankful list item of the day:

24. I am thankful for down time.
I haven't had much of it lately, and it seems I never really appreciate it until I don't have much of it. We have been quite busy with other projects and family visits and such, and I haven't had many quiet days at home and/or in the studio lately.... hence the lack of artsy-related posts (which I hope to remedy very soon)... Anyway, I am thankful for time for quiet reflection, Bible study, rest, creativity, and refreshment.

(And now, the soapbox portion of today's post.... dear reader, beware!)

And, isn't that what Thanksgiving is about in one sense? Taking time out to stop, reflect on all that we've been given, and then give thanks to the Giver of those good gifts while we enjoy a day together with family and friends? I think so. That, in addition to the insanity of the crowds, is why I completely boycott all of the "Day after Thanksgiving" hooplah. No, I'm not saying, "Bah, Humbug!" to Christmas, gift-giving, or even finding good deals and the like. But, I do believe the essence of thanks-giving gets overshadowed when our focus is centered on all the new things we're going to BUY! BUY! BUY! the next day.

Isn't Satan clever? He's removed the focus of the Resurrection by throwing the Easter Bunny at us, he's distracted us from the birth of our Savior with Santa Claus, and now, he's preventing us from being truly thankful for what we do have by stirring up our coveteousness for that which we don't.


As I like to say, it's not a good deal if you don't need it. And frankly, here in the US, most of us don't need much of anything.

So, spend the holiday thanking God for all of His good gifts; spend it with family; and don't miss out on the blessings of thankfulness and contentment. No "stuff" can replace that.


Rushing in and out...

of the house for a quick dinner break before heading back out to put a second coat of stain on a floor we're refinishing for a friend... but just wanted to pop in with my thankful list item for today:

23. Today, I'm thankful for the little things... Tea with friends, finding out I was the winner of a very cool calendar today on Stephanie Levy's blog, my dog being excited to see me every single time I come home, whether I've been gone for 10 minutes or 10 hours, words of encouragement from a friend... that sort of thing.

Speaking of thankfulness and also of blog giveaways, remember, there are still a couple of days left to enter my Thanksgiving Giveaway for a 5x5 or 5x7 print of your choice from my shop! And, if you place an order by midnight tonight, you can earn two additional entries! Or, link it on your blog and send me the link, and earn one extra entry! Click HERE for the original post and to leave a comment. Good luck!


Giving Thanks...

...today for...
22. Modern technology. My sometimes-working computer, phones, electricity,  appliances, modern medicine, cameras, transportation, indoor plumbing, free books on itunes for my ipod, the electric heater I'm roasting my feet over at this very moment... that sort of thing. We have so many things that make meeting even the most basic necessities of our lives easier, and we so often take them for granted.

Don't forget - there's still time to enter the Thanksgiving Giveaway for a free print! Hope you're having a lovely day of rest...


Today's Thankful List Item...

Just a quick post today. Today, I am thankful for...

21. The opportunities I have to serve others. Some of the most satisfying moments of my life have been not when I was getting something for myself, but rather when I have been able to give something to someone else who needed it. Whether it was meeing a physical need in some way, working to build or repair a home for someone in need, or just giving the gift of time and compassion to a lonely person, I have found that it truly is more blessed to give than to receive.

Speaking of giving, don't miss any opportunities God gives you during the upcoming holidays to bless someone in need...

And also, don't forget to enter my Thanksgiving Giveaway! There's still time, and one of my prints would make a lovely Christmas gift for someone in your life!


Today's Thankful List Item...

20. Ok, this item from my list is really going to reveal my OCD tendencies. But I have to say, I am very thankful for things that make my life more clean and more organized. This includes everything from Clorox disinfectant wipes to a clean and orderly desk, and of course, little labels on everything. I love my label maker. ;) It honestly warms my heart to bring order to a messy room or cabinet, to put a fresh coat of paint over a scuffed up wall, or look around at a sparkling home. So, that's all for today.... here's a little peek into my OCD studio!

Don't forget - there's still time to enter my THANKSGIVING GIVEAWAY! Thank you, Blog Giveaways, for the link!


Just popping in...

...to share my Thankful List item for the day!

19. Today is my Mom's 59th birthday, so today (and every other day), I'm thankful for her! Actually, I'm very thankful for both of my parents - godly, Christian parents are definitely a blessing. I appreciate their love and all of their sacrifices for me. Love you, Mom and Dad!

(Incidentally, my parents are pictured here in front of the Eastern Gate to Jerusalem. Click here to read an interesting article regarding this unusual gate.)

...and don't forget! There's still time to enter my Thanksgiving Giveaway for a free 5x5 or 5x7 in. print of your choice from my shop!


Platonic Hot Chocolate Recipe

As long as I'm  carrying on in this ridiculous manner about platonic hot chocolate, I thought I'd share a recipe with you. As hot chocolates go, this one comes the closest to embodying the perfect form of hot-chocolateness as any I've ever tasted... this is the hot chocolate whose shadow Swiss Miss sees and dreams about while she's sitting in Plato's cave. Enjoy...

Hot Chocolate Mix

1 lb. box powdered sugar
2 lb. box Quik Mix
16 oz. jar Cremora
8 qt. box powdered milk
5 t. cinnamon

Mix well. Fill mug 1/3 full with mix, then add hot water and stir. YUMMY!

And, today's Thankful List addition:

18. I am thankful for days when I'm not having allergy problems. Today isn't one of them. But unhampered breathing is really, really nice. Don't take it for granted.

P.S. Don't forget to enter the Thanksgiving Giveaway! There's still time!


Tuesday Morning Potpourri

Today I have a few different things to share with you...

First, remember there's still time to enter the Thanksgiving Giveaway! You can win a free 5"x5" or 5"x7" print of your choice from my shop! There's also time to earn extra entries by linking to that post in your own blog or by placing an order before 11.23.09! So hop on over and do that!

Secondly, I wanted to show you a little knitting project I made last week for my Mom's birthday gift...

This pattern is called "Stirling Cloche," and it's available for free (that's right, FREE, people!) at Ravelry.

If you're not familiar with Ravelry, let me tell you a little about it. It's FANTASTIC! It's a social network for knitters & crocheters, much like facebook, but it's centered around your needlecraft projects.

You can find your friends and add them to your friend list (look me up - I'm "artknitwit"!), keep track of your finished projects and works in progress, and even queue up future projects and the patterns for them! It also has some neat features like allowing you to keep a running inventory of your needles, fibers, and pattern/book library. I attempted this feature once upon a time but finally had to just say "NO," because I can quickly get caught up in spending all my time organizing my supplies and rearranging them and never actually get anything made. (Yes, I have CDO. It's like OCD, but the letters are in alphabetical order, like they should be.) At any rate, you can do that, if that floats your boat. This feature also allows you to search other people's inventories in the event you need some elusive skein from a discontinued lot number to finish a project, and then you can work out a swap. Pretty cool.

Probably my favorite feature, however, is the fact that there are literally thousands of patterns linked on the site! And many of them are free and can be downloaded right to your own computer! You can search for whatever type of project you want by a number of filters (free only, socks, hats, baby, toys, one skein, etc.), so there's really no need to buy patterns anymore! And my favorite part is this - once you find a pattern you like, you can view all of the projects that people have linked back to that pattern, so you can see what that particular pattern looks like in different colors, fibers, etc. You can link your own projects back to the pattern too, and it allows you to make notes if you have made any alterations or have any comments or advice.

Obviously, I think you should sign up for Ravelry. It's a knitter/crocheter's best friend.

As for the cloche, it was knitted in the round, first on circular needles, then dpns (double-pointed-needles), then hand-felted. The band was knitted seperately, the flower on the side was crocheted, and both of these were also hand-felted. Felting is a fairly simple process, although it's time-consuming, but well worth it. It involves agitating the finished piece in warm, soapy water (can be done by hand or in the machine if monitored closely) until the fibers shrink up and mat together. Then you rinse it, press excess water out, then mold it in shape to dry (a bowl works well for hats, or your own head!) It must be done with 100% animal fiber (wool, alpaca, etc.) for best results and is permanent. Felting will cause shrinking, so be sure to make your finished piece a little large to begin with.

And, as you can see, my Mom liked it... :)

And, finally....my Thankful List...

I'm a little behind in getting started, but I think it's worth doing. Several of my blogging friends have been keeping a "Thankful List" this month in honor of Thanksgiving.... So, here's the beginning of mine (making up what I've missed so far), and I will add one thing each day until Thanksgiving.

I'm thankful for:

  1. Salvation through Jesus Christ, the hope I have in Him, and the gift of His Word.

  2. A godly, wonderful husband who is my best friend.

  3. A wonderful Christian family and family-in-law.

  4. My furry and sometimes grouchy little ray of sunshine, Harvey, a miniature schnauzer.

  5. Faithful, loyal, and honest friends.

  6. A church family that truly is acting like the Body of Christ.

  7. The freedoms we so often take for granted in this country, and the example of faithfulness in other Christians around the world who don't enjoy those freedoms but keep on believing in spite of persecution and hardship anyway.

  8. God's provision and faithfulness in the lean times.

  9. Creativity and the ability to learn and make new things, and the potential they have for displaying God's truth and beauty to the world.

  10. Good health. (We never think about this one much until we or someone we care about loses it. What a gift it is...)

  11. Shelter, clothing, food, transportation, everything I need and much more.

  12. Books. Good books. Lots of good books.

  13. In the spirit of fall, my favorite season:
    GLORY be to God for dappled things—
    For skies of couple-colour as a brinded cow;
    For rose-moles all in stipple upon trout that swim;
    Fresh-firecoal chestnut-falls; finches’ wings;
    Landscape plotted and pieced—fold, fallow, and plough;
    And áll trádes, their gear and tackle and trim.

    All things counter, original, spare, strange;
    Whatever is fickle, freckled (who knows how?)
    With swift, slow; sweet, sour; adazzle, dim;
    He fathers-forth whose beauty is past change: 
    Praise Him.
    ("Pied Beauty," Gerard Manley Hopkins)

  14. An education, the ability to read, the fact that my parents cared enough to home school me and give me a solid foundation, and a mind to process it all.

  15. Laughter, a sense of humor, and just a touch of non-malicious sarcasm (if you know me, you'll catch the irony there).

  16. The ability to communicate and relate to others - fellowship.

  17. Hot chocolate. (By this, I mean not simply hot chocolate, but rather the platonic ideal of hot-chocolateness and everything that represents, which to me, encompasses the broader spectrum of all things nice, comfortable and comforting, cozy, homey, old-fashioned, timeless, delicious, special, and good. In short, it includes but is not limited to: warm cookies, fresh baked bread, polartec, your favorite bathrobe, the shoes that fit just right, the dog curled up by your foot, a hot fire and a good book, a home-cooked meal from Mamaw or Mom, the smell of Christmas trees, the soft glow of tungsten light as opposed to the garish buzz of fluorescent, your own pillow, the familiar, not needing a map or GPS, holidays with family, fishing with your dog, naps on Sunday afternoon, and sticking your always-cold feet as close as you possibly can to a fire without setting yourself on fire. That sort of thing.)

    Back tomorrow with more..... in the mean time, make your own list!
Have a lovely day...



Yesterday I carved a little bee stamp...my first hand-carved stamp ever!
I'm pretty happy with how it turned out...

My first use for this little bug
was to decorate a few little thank you notes
that will be going out with some orders from my shop -
thank you!

Don't forget!
There's still time to enter the giveaway,
and you can earn some extra entries (and a little bee thank you note!)
by placing an order before 11.23.09!


The Weight of Glory and of Leprechauns

Last weekend I participated in my local farmer's market. I sell my prints alongside other locals selling produce, canned goods, handmade items, and baked goods. I enjoy being part of the local community, and I meet a lot of interesting people.

Our market is made up of many different "types." We have the old-school farmers who wear overalls and obviously know exactly what they're doing judging by the size and quantity of their produce. We have the organic, crunchy people who wear tie-dyed shirts and Birkenstocks and can tell you what to put in your compost and the health benefits of certain herbs and that sort of thing. (I have nothing against Birkenstocks, incidentally - I got married in them.) Then we have the motherly/grandmotherly types who make lots of wonderful needlecrafts and baked goods. Then, you have a few odd ducks like me who don't really fit into any of the other categories. It's an interesting variety, and I enjoy it...

However, last Saturday, being a cold and slow day at the Farmer's Market, I found myself involved in what began as a very Normal Farmer's Market Conversation [NFMC], and ended up being one of the strangest and saddest conversations I've ever had. What follows is an excerpt of the conversation, as accurately as I can remember it. I have concealed the names of the other two people involved because I don’t know them for their protection. So here we go:

Lady 1 (L1): I'm almost out of goat cheese... NFMC, right?

Me: Do you make it yourself? NFMC

Lady 2 (L2): No, we get it from this lady in NC. NFMC

L1: It's so good - no artificial ingredients; just pure goat's milk. NFMC

L2: Maybe when she comes in the spring, we can get her to bring some. NFMC

Me: Is she coming for one of the Farmer’s Market demo events? NFMC

L2: No, she's coming to do a private thing at her (L1's) house. NFMC

Me: Oh, I see... NFMC

L2: She's doing a "Spirit Party." !?!

Me, leaning forward, certain that I misunderstood her through my ear muffs: A "spirit" party…? A far-off bell, clanging through the fog…

L2: Yes, a spirit party... you know, in the trees.

Me: In the trees....? Cue the Twilight Zone soundtrack.

L2: This lady we know speaks to the spirits and the sprites and the nymphs. She has been doing it ever since she was a little girl. Kitchen smoke detector, activated, 3am; simultaneously, shrieking ambulance pulls into the driveway.

L1: Yes, she’s heard them since she was 8.
Me: silence; brief clip of _The Exorcist_ runs involuntarily through brain.

L2: Yes, she's always heard them; she always kept quiet about it because people made fun of her, but now that people are more receptive to thinking that there are things out there besides us, she’s starting to speak about it to small groups. What you do is you host a party at your house….

L1, interjecting: Yes, we’ll have lunch. You can make the food, I’ll make the desserts.

L2: That sounds good, or I can make the desserts… This lady comes, and you pick out a special tree that has a deep meaning to you, and she comes and communicates with the spirits in the tree and the fairies and the elves.

Me: speechless, deer-in-the-headlights-look-on-face, glancing around, looking for the hidden camera crew.

L1 awkwardly, after looking at my face, to L2: I think I’ve picked out my tree….

L2: Oh have you, which one is it?

Me: Numbly wondering how exactly I landed on Pluto that morning…

L1: It’s a black hawthorn tree – it blooms in the spring and has thorns on it.

L2: Oh yes, I’ve heard you mention that one.

L1: It’s beautiful, and the little people like it.

Me: feeling I am beginning to have an out-of-body experience; last thing I remember thinking: “Little people… as in leprechauns.........?”

At this point, the remainder of the conversation is a bit fuzzy, as no camera crew ever popped out, no punch line was delivered, and I was left to deal with the fact that I was standing with two very normal-looking 60-something-year-old women (these weren’t even the tie-dyed Birkenstock people) who were having a serious discussion about bringing in an “expert” from NC to talk to the leprechauns and tree spirits who frequent their back yards. I believe somewhere in the fuzziness I received an invitation to attend the event next spring… but I’m pretty sure I’ll be having a headache that day.
If the whole experience had been a joke, dream, or a scene from a book or movie, it would have been outrageously funny, and I would still be chuckling about it… But it wasn’t a dream; it really happened. These two misguided ladies sincerely believe they can talk to trees and fairies in their back yards, with the help of this goat-cheese-making-medium from NC. And that is how they’re finding meaning in their lives….

It reminded me yet again that there really aren’t many different types of people out there. There are just two types… those who have repented of their sin, placed their trust in Jesus Christ, and are bound for an eternity in heaven, and those who have put their trust elsewhere and are bound for an eternity in hell: “the weight of glory,” as C.S. Lewis calls it:

It may be possible for each to think too much of his own potential glory hereafter; it is hardly possible for him to think too often or too deeply about that of his neighbour. The load, or weight, or burden of my neighbour’s glory should be laid daily on my back, a load so heavy that only humility can carry it, and the backs of the proud will be broken. It is a serious thing to live in a society of possible gods and goddesses, to remember that the dullest and most uninteresting person you talk to may one day be a creature which, if you saw it now, you would be strongly tempted to worship, or else a horror and a corruption such as you now meet, if at all, only in a nightmare. All day long we are, in some degree, helping each other to one or other of these destinations. It is in the light of these overwhelming possibilities, it is with the awe and the circumspection proper to them, that we should conduct all our dealings with one another, all friendships, all loves, all play, all politics. There are no ordinary people. You have never talked to a mere mortal. Nations, cultures, arts, civilization—these are mortal, and their life is to ours as the life of a gnat. But it is immortals whom we joke with, work with, marry, snub, and exploit—immortal horrors or everlasting splendours. This does not mean that we are to be perpetually solemn. We must play. But our merriment must be of that kind (and it is, in fact, the merriest kind) which exists between people who have, from the outset, taken each other seriously—no flippancy, no superiority, no presumption. And our charity must be a real and costly love, with deep feeling for the sins in spite of which we love the sinner—no mere tolerance or indulgence which parodies love as flippancy parodies merriment. Next to the Blessed Sacrament itself, your neighbour is the holiest object presented to your senses. If he is your Christian neighbour he is holy in almost the same way, for in him also Christ vere latitat—the glorifier and the glorified, Glory Himself, is truly hidden (C.S. Lewis, “The Weight of Glory”).

Every day we come into contact with people on one of two roads. I’m sorry to say that on this occasion, I was so stunned that I lacked the presence of mind to even know how to begin to share the Gospel with these two ladies. But if I see them again, and if they renew their invitation to their tree spirit party, I think I’ll decline, but I’ll tell them about a tree that’s meaningful to me:
On a hill far away stood an old rugged cross,
the emblem of suffering and shame;
and I love that old cross where the dearest and best
for a world of lost sinners was slain.

O that old rugged cross, so despised by the world,
has a wondrous attraction for me;
for the dear Lamb of God left his glory above
to bear it to dark Calvary.

In that old rugged cross, stained with blood so divine,
a wondrous beauty I see,
for 'twas on that old cross Jesus suffered and died,
to pardon and sanctify me.

To that old rugged cross I will ever be true,
its shame and reproach gladly bear;
then he'll call me some day to my home far away,
where his glory forever I'll share.

So I'll cherish the old rugged cross,
till my trophies at last I lay down;
I will cling to the old rugged cross,
and exchange it some day for a crown.
(The Old Rugged Cross, by George Bennard)


Farmer's Market Tomorrow....

 ...come by and see me 7am-1pm at the Greeneville Fair Grounds.
Don't forget to enter my Thanksgiving Giveaway too! So many ways to earn entries! Yay!


the moon looked cool tonight...

Don't forget to enter my Thanksgiving Giveaway!

A marriage of blogs...

So, maybe you stopped by today and thought, "Hm, this looks kind of different!" Well, you would be right...

Up until this point, I have been (sporadically) keeping up with two blogs, this one, and another called "The Breakfast Philosopher." This one was for all things arts-and-crafts-related; the other was for whatever I felt like ranting about everything else. Finding the need to simplify my online life, I am condensing them both into this one blog, Beth Stone Studio. Easier for me to keep up with, and probably more interesting for you....well, here's hoping, anyway. I can't make any guarantees on that account.

I spend a lot of my time doing mindless gerbil work painting and crafting, and consequently, I have a lot of time to mull things over while my hands are busy. So, this blog is now the marriage of both of those parts of my life. You'll get to see what I'm working on and read what I was thinking about while working on it. I might even throw in some completely unrelated and random stories, photos, videos, and links I think might interest or amuse you.

In case you were a devoted follower of "The Breakfast Philosopher" and are feeling all panicky about its demise - don't fret! The worthwhile posts are now included in the archives of "Beth Stone Studio," so the two of you can go back and re-read them to your hearts' content.

So, stay tuned for future posts with an expanded focus... and don't forget to enter my Thanksgiving Giveaway! Remember, you can earn extra entries by linking to my post on your blog or by placing an order from my website or my Etsy shop by 11.23.09! And of course, don't forget to leave a comment and "Follow" me on Google Friend Connect! Thanks!

Hope you're having a lovely fall day!


Thanksgiving Giveaway!

Howdy, Friends!
Because I have so much for which to be thankful,
and in the spirit of giving, I am doing a Thanksgiving Giveaway! The prize will be one 5"x7" or 5"x5" print of your choice from my shop!
Here are the rules to enter:

Earn one entry by doing one or both of the following:
#1 - "Follow" this blog on Google Friend Connect
(you'll find a button to do this on the right sidebar).

#2 - Leave a comment on this post.

Follow the entry rules for everyone,
plus earn an additional entry by linking to this particular post on your blog
that will let people know about the Giveaway,
then sending me the link to your post!

Follow the entry rules for everyone,
plus earn an additional 2 entries by placing an order
from my website or my new Etsy shop
before 11.23.09.
(Visit either link now to pick out
what you like in case you win!)

I will put everyone's name in a hat,
then draw and announce the winner on 11.25.09!