Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Hey You!

"Yes, you!...
the one reading this.
You are beautiful, talented,
amazing, and simply 
the best at being you.
Never forget that."
(quote found on Pinterest; author unknown)

Collage Obsession set a challenge with
the theme being, "swapping heads".
So I decided to play along for this round...

I took the head of an owl from an owl post-it kind of note pad, then added it to the body of a Julie Nutting Prima Doll Stamp.  Then I looked up owl quotes, HERE, and narrowed it down to one that I thought was cutest for this particular tag...  Next, I decided to make two.  I then added miniature crochet doilies, silk fabric yo-yos for flowers..  some beads, lace trim, and a stick pin made from one of the heart beads I've been making. I inked the edges of the tags, and of all the words, and then I was done.  One is to keep for myself, and one is for a friend.

Thanks so much for stopping by today!

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Hippity-Hop, Don't Stop

Oh, but I've just GOT to stop, to say I hope you all had a blessed and very Happy Easter!..  Then, quick, like a bunny, I also want to share a few things I've worked on in the past couple of months!

First I made a rectangular sort of crocheted doily, 
with St. Patrick's Day in mind...

This was inspired by the crochet pattern, found HERE, where the motifs just looked like shamrocks to me!

Very easy this was to whip up, I put some of my scrap yarns to good use, and I'm very happy with how it came out.

As the Spring season sets in, and the weather's been warming up, we've been very appreciative of that, spending time outdoors, and walking our dog again, nearly every day! I couldn't believe my eyes, when one day I saw a bald eagle! Never have I seen one before!..  other than by pictures, of course.  Here it was, our country's national symbol of strength, and the spirit of freedom, was soaring so gracefully and beautifully, just overhead!  Thinking this must be a once in a lifetime deal; much to my surprise, it was only a few days or so later when we saw TWO eagles flying together!  I wish I had the quality kind of camera needed to capture such a sight; but alas, I work with what I have. So-ooo...

I just had to paint something 
in my art journal pages to remember it by!

Speaking of art, I suppose it should be no surprise that my collection of art supplies keeps growing as I grow (I like to think) artistically. Oftentimes, I'm fumbling through my markers to art journal with, or for when I'm making my own greeting cards. I've been very happy with the Letraset Promarkers I've been using, but I find myself seeking additional colors to achieve that well-done, quality look I hope to achieve..  So, as much as I try to keep unnecessary expenses down, I find that a small investment may have to be made for at least a few Copic Markers as well....  But where to put them all?  I could see this would be an issue, so here's what I put together!

Simply, from two Capri Sun boxes, and inspired by Julie Walters' video, HERE, I now have a pretty place to organize the collection of markers that I have, with room to add more in time!

It looks great in my craft room, which I hope to show again sometime, in another post, as it's changed a bit since I last shared it with you!

Recently, I needed a special place to put one of my journals, along with some personal treasures and souvenirs of sorts, so I altered an old shipping box...

(actual size: about 13" x 11" x 4 1/2" deep)

I had a vintage, shabby-chic image in mind, but wanted to keep it colorful..   Nothing in shades of dingy-old browns!  By way of decoupage, collage, inks, laces, and various embellishments, I am very happy with how this came out!  I made ALL the flowers myself, and you'll find that there are a total of 8 doilies; two being paper, and the other six, I crocheted myself!

The black heart stick pin, was made with one of the heart beads I've shown before, inspired by the tutorial shared HERE. (I'm SO addicted..  I'll definitely be making more beads!)

Well, as Easter began to roll around, it seems inevitable that I would find myself making another bunny or two, in spirit of the holiday!  Here's one, made with a clear glass bowl of sorts. 

You can find the pattern HERE.

Then, I made these two...

which are suggested to hold pencils, but later, I thought it would be cuter to use them for holding forks and spoons on the coffee and desserts table, for Easter! The pattern can be found HERE, but I used the containers I had on hand, and had to alter it only in height; meaning I simply added rows to the body, be it in pink or blue.

For my kids at church, I had a much more limited amount of time to make baskets, but I managed as best I could.  I took the bottom halves of empty, 2-liter soda bottles, added a clear plastic canvas handle and some Easter grass...

And all I need to do from there, was add the goodies!  Despite my regret that I couldn't find time to make them any fancier, I find the kids really don't look twice at the "vessel", itself, anyway!..  It seems, immediately, that they just want to see what's IN them! So all in all, I was happy that the kids were happy to get them!

Well, in midst of all this crafting, I have been doing a little baking.  I tried a new recipe, HERE, for Banana Split Bread...


Now, the time I most like to have a home-baked bread like this, would be at breakfast time; but as much as I LOVE chocolate, it's really not my favorite thing first thing in the morning.  So, this bread, for my taste, is more of a snack/dessert kind of bread...  But DELICIOUS just the same!!  I would definitely make it again!

Easter plans went this year as follows:  I made the ham dinner, with all the fixins.  Mom made all the pies. And Dear Daughter was in charge of cleaning and setting up her own house, so that we could all get together there!  And family tradition calls for a bunny cake to be setting amongst the desserts, should we actually have room for it after we've eaten dinner!

Running so down to the wire, I was still spreading the frosting and slapping on a face as we were running out the door!..  but still, I think he still came out cute enough!.. (and he was delicious too!)

I'd say God sent us a perfectly beautiful day for Easter Sunday!  First thing, I put the ham into the crock pot. Then, I went to church, came home and once all the food prep was done and in order, Dear Son and I were on our way to Dear Daughter's for some quality family time!  My parents would meet us all there for the festivities as well...   

The sun was shining! We saw neighborhood children running around their houses, looking for eggs that the Easter Bunny hid..  bringing back wonderful memories of my own kids being so little, doing the same, not so long ago!... God's been very good to me!

Thanks so much for stopping by today!

Friday, February 28, 2014

My First Timmy Tags!

Okay..  I'm not entirely sure Mr. Holtz would appreciate my calling him Timmy to his face, but I certainly hope he wouldn't mind me referring to my tags as I do!  In previous years, I've been reluctant to follow along with the 12 Tags of the Year events, which he holds each year on his website, timholtz.com, only because I NEVER had ALL of the supplies he suggested.

But most recently, I was inspired by a very talented YouTube friend, HERE, who shared that she could make these tags, whether she had all the materials or not!  She proved she could adapt, improvise, and substitute her way around while still following the basic gist of the theme/techniques for the month!  So impressed, I said to myself, "Why not me, then?!  I guess I can still join in, make some tags, and learn what I can from the master, right?!"  Being the end of February already, I figured I'd better get moving then! So, here are my Timmy Tags for January and February 2014...

January's tag called for a good number of supplies I didn't have; the biggest being the pocket watch and circle dies.  But you may recall how I've made my own pocket watch before, HERE in THIS POST.  I recycled old foil seals from frosting tubs, peanut butter jars, etc., etc...   This one is a little smaller, and this time I used the "Gears" embossing folder, made by The Paper Studio, for the front of my pocket watch.

At the top is a safety pin with an old key I don't use anymore.  "Let's get this party started" is just a phrase I clipped out of a magazine.  The stamping is done with Close To My Heart "Capture the Date" stamps.  The background and edging of my tags were done with Tim Holtz distress inks, in vintage photo, and black soot. I'm really happy with how this turned out!!

Now, here is my Timmy Tag for February..

Again, I did not have all the suggested supplies.  I did use my Tim Holtz distress inks, but for the hearts background, I also used the leftover cardboard I had after punching all the hearts for the beads I made in my previous post!

It worked well, and I think I'll be saving it, to use for other projects too!  I love the quote I used..  ha! ha!.. from the movie, Gone With The Wind!  I thought it was perfect for two reasons; one, for Valentines Day, and two, because the Oscar Awards will be taking place soon.  Gone With The Wind is one of my all time FAVORITE movies, so I hand-wrote Rhett Butler's famous line with a white Stabilo pencil for that chalkboard look.  The heart is made from chipboard and glitter wrapping paper.  I added silver paint and stickles, and a silver ribbon at the top..  And I was done!

So that's all for now folks!..  Thank God it's Friday, and the weekend is almost here!  I plan to take down the Valentines Day decor all 'round the house, and I'll be replacin' it with all "me" St. Patrick's Day finest!

Thanks for stopping by today!  

Friday, February 14, 2014

Follow Your Heart

Well, long time, no see!..  I've been fine, but the schedule 'round here has been a combination of complicated, crazy, and just plain never stops; so, by the time evening rolls around, where I find some time for myself, I'm afraid I just haven't been drawn to the computer so much.  But following my heart on this day, here I am, hoping to at least say "Hi!" to everyone, and here's what I've been up to creatively...

By January 31st, I was STILL taking down my Christmas decoration.  I was definitely running a little late with that, but just as soon as that was done, I was putting the Valentine's day stuff up in it's place!  Here are a few new ornaments I crocheted for my Valentine's Day tree...  The first set was made following this pattern HERE...

The next set of hearts I crocheted had wings!  You can find the pattern to make these right HERE...

Here's just a glimpse of my tree altogether!  See my Valentine Snoopy up at the top?  I still think it needs some garland, but I'm very happy with my little tree nevertheless.

Standing at only about 3 feet tall, it's a perfect size for me to decorate year-round.  It always lifts my spirits!  It does my heart good every time I look at it!

Actually, we've been getting hit with a great accumulation of snowfall, these last couple of days; about a foot of it!  Schools are closed everywhere, and we're just staying indoors, till plows and salt trucks can clear things up a bit..  In the meantime, doesn't this little bunny just warm your heart some?!  I quick painted him one night, following a fun tutorial I found right HERE...

On this 2-page layout, I also played and practiced with borders, and then a little bit of icy-cold lettering, which I learned to do right HERE!  I painted these pages in the new art/junque journal that I made myself for the new year, 2014.

I love the purples on this one, 9 x 12" in size, and the lacy trim is just gorgeous up close!  The hanging clock is a chipboard die cut, and the flower is inspired by Fiona, who has numerous tutorials on flowers and more on YouTube.

(3-page spread, inspired by Terri Sproul)

I belong to a few different art journaling groups now, so I'm constantly inspired with countless prompts and techniques!..

(Index Card A Day, for Mini Album Scraps)

Of course, these days, hearts are popping up all over!!

Here are even some beads I'm making myself, in the shape of hearts, that are coming out beautifully!! They're just a smidgen under an inch in size, and I'm still working on them; but they're very simple to make, and are so much prettier when you see them up close...  I guess that's why I'm up to 44 of them, right?!...

Now guess what they're made from...   the cardboard from cereal boxes!!!  Yup, you read that right!..  That, or from tissue boxes, cracker boxes, etc., etc...  Can you believe it?!  I will definitely be making MORE of these, and if you'd like to try them too, you can find Jennibellie's tutorial right HERE!

One last project, for now, of course, is this Valentine's Day tp mini album I'm working on (made from empty kitchen paper towel rolls, to be precise)...  The size of these little albums can be challenging when decorating, but they're still so much fun to make, and I've always been happy with the results!

Oh!..  I shouldn't forget that this now leads me to altering some of the leftover cardboard tubes I had!  I made a few of these...

I'll be using these for some acrylic paint stamping/printing on my art journal pages!  Cute, huh? Wouldn't this be fun to do with the kids/grandkids?!..  I found this very easy tutorial to make them on Pinterest, right HERE!

So that about wraps things up for now!  
Thanks for stopping by, and remember..

"Put your heart, mind, intellect, and soul even into
your smallest acts.  This is the secret of success."
(quote: Swami Sivananda)

Kissy, Kissy!
(I got this with my Christmas money!  I just LOVE her!)

Happy Valentine's Day!!

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Blank Pages

I picked myself up a spiral-bound set of index cards just recently, so to use as an Index Card A Day type of art journal for my purse.  I've tried toting around other sorts of art journals, but they've all been just too big. I think this one, however, with its pages measuring only 4x6", might just be perfect.

(Top is inside cover; bottom is first page, dated Jan. 1, 2014)

I seriously doubt I'll find time to draw, paint, and/or journal in it every day, but I'm looking forward to filling its pages with memories, adventures, thoughts, hopes, dreams, and as much creativity as I possibly can in the year ahead.

Wishing you and yours 
a blessed and very Happy New Year!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Good To Be Back

So long since I last posted, I will just briefly explain that I had some very minor surgery than ran into some minor complication, which then resulted in a slow recovery.  No sooner was I feeling better, for maybe a day or two, then I came down with a real whopper of a cold; the worst, I'd say, I've had in years!  So, I'm just gonna knock on wood, and thank my lucky stars that, having fully recovered, all seems well again, and I can finally, whole-heartedly enjoy all the joy and magic that only Christmas can bring!

First, I'll begin by joining in on today's Wednesday Hodgepodge, hosted by Joyce, at From This Side of the Pond.  A list of questions are provided, and my own list of answers are as follows...

1)  Do you believe in miracles?

Answer:  Yes.  I couldn't say for sure that I've personally experienced one, but I might classify my two beautiful children as miracles, yes?..   And there was one time, where my mother and I were in the car, crossing through an intersection at the same exact time that another car was crossing that same intersection. We both just held tight, and closed our eyes, not knowing what the next second or two would bring; and yet just a fleeting moment after, we were absolutely puzzled and shocked to realize the two cars never hit.  We had actually made it through that intersection without a dent or a scratch!  We immediately pulled over, while the other car just sped away, and we both just sat there, wondering how it was possible?..  how we survived it?!  It definitely FELT like a miracle to us!

2)  What's a recent fad you admit to trying?

Answer:  When I think of fads, my minds visualizes two things.  Fashion fads, and then toy/collectible types of fads.  In the way of fashion fads, the first thing that came to mind is really an old fad.  I have long hair, so I often wear it up, depending on whatever task at hand, or environment at the time, and/or any particular special occasion...  While it may now be considered a major fashion faux-pas, you'll still catch me wearing a scrunchie every now and then.  I like them.  I make them..  And I don't live in Manahattan, so I'm still gonna wear them!

Another fad that came to mind was a toy...  Well, a doll.  I collect dolls, so when I first heard about the big Monster High doll craze, I checked them out, and absolutely loved them.  I had to have one!

So I found the one I liked most, I purchased her, and I still think she's just the cutest!  Honestly, I'd like another one, but I forgot to ask Santa!  (wink, wink!)

3)  Peppermint:  Are you a fan?  If so, what's your favorite peppermint food or beverage?

Answer:  I really like both Junior Mints and York Peppermint Patties!  Yum!  I hope Santa fills my Christmas stocking with BOTH!!

4)  Break the ice, on thin ice, or cold as ice (emotionally, not literally)..  Which phrase have you run into most recently?

Answer:  My dog recently broke a milk glass vase of mine, so I would have to say he was walking on very thin ice at the moment!..   Funny thing is, he just sits there like it's no big deal, while the cat goes running in fear of what's next!  (Here you see all is forgiven, and we're out a short walk..  that is, BEFORE all the snow most recently arrived!)

5)  Have you ever broken or spilled something in someone else's home?..  Are you still friends?

Answer:  I'm sure I have, but I can't remember a specific incident.  Guess that means it was no big deal, and forgiveness is divine, because I don't remember losing any friendships over it!

6)  'Tis the week before Christmas!  Are you feeling more like Buddy The Elf, or like The Grinch before his
heart grew?

Answer:  Despite the typical stress that tight schedules and finances bring this time of year, I think I'm definitely feeling more like Buddy The Elf!  "The best way to spread Christmas cheer is singing loud for all to hear!"

7)  Share a favorite quote relating to Christmas...

Answer:  "I will honor Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year."...    "God bless us, every one."  ~Charles Dickens

8)  Insert random thought?...

Answer:  Well, the weather 'round here is frightful!  Just over the weekend we recieved a whopping 12" of snow, but we managed to make it to church, after which members of all ages were invited to make gingerbread houses!  This was so much fun, and I took lots of pictures, but here's just one..

We had a dentist appointment to go to yesterday; and as four inches of snow was falling on an already-fallen 12 inches of snow, the roads were a nightmare!!!  But we survived them, and are safely back enjoying the comforts of home again, I'm very happy to say!  In my spare time, I am baking, still decorating, and of course Christmas crafting.  While watching my favorite Christmas movies at night, I set myself up with my newest favorite holiday cup of tea...

And then I work on crocheting several pairs of slippers, intended for Christmas gifts...

I found the pattern for Crocodile Stitch Boots a little difficult at first, but came to understand the pattern better in time.  Above are the pairs I'm working on so far.  I think they're coming out cute, and I hope everyone likes them.  Once they're all finished, I'll add the buttons, wrap them up, and put them under the tree!

Thanks to Joyce for hosting Wednesday Hodgepode!

And thanks to YOU for stopping by today!  
Here's hoping you're bursting with Christmas spirit, 
and that you're truly enjoying this 
most wonderful time of the year!