Monday, December 31, 2007

Card catch up

Firstly, (is that a word?), allow me to apologize for the fuzzy scans. I have this new scanner, an EPSON, and it does not like 3D images to scan. My HP did a fantastic job of scanning, but everything has a lifespan, so... This first number is a birthday card for my stash. It's an Art Impressions stamp colored with Prismacolor pencils. I think it took me about 4 hours to color. I usually price my cards according to how long it took me to make it, but I don't know that I can charge enough for this card that someone would pay for it. Would you pay $10 for this card? This card is done with a stamp by Terry Medaris. I love his stamps. I recently made 6 or 7 cards with his stamps and sent them in to Rubber Stamp Madness for their Southwestern card submissions. I love this image because it's so quick to color. I do wish it was a little smaller, though, that way I could put a little more on an A2 card than just the image. Oh well. Yay, I finally got around to stamping a House Mouse image. I've been so busy with everything else that my HM stamps have been put on the back burner. This stamp is another one that is quick to color and make into a card. I now have about 35 HM stamps. I buy them from the HM Stamps guy. He has some great prices on Stampabilities and Penny Black. You should check him out. This last card is made using justjohanna stamps. I just felt like making an anniversary card. I hadn't used my Eiffel tower stamp yet so I thought it would be appropriate for a lovey dovey card. French stuff seems lovey dovey. Croissant. Doesn't that sound sexy? Um, ok. I think I've had enough of the spiced egg nog. I'm off to watch the New Years' festivities on the telly. Happy New Year to everyone! See you in 2008....

Friday, December 28, 2007

Friday Cards

Some cards take a long time, some don't. This first card, the 4x4 thank you card was very quick and easy. I used my new DreamKutz to cut my 12x12 paper into three 4x12 strips and then cut those down to 4x8 strips, folded them in half and voila! Big purple scallop circle punch with Stickles. justjohanna stamped image colored with Prismas. This second card was very quick to make. I first stamped the two images, the sentiment and then the strawberry row (justjohanna images) and then colored the berries with my prismas. Two reds and two greens for the pencils and done. I double-matted the image and then mounted it on red 4.25x5.5 Prism cardstock. I made two of these cards and I think I finished in about 15 minutes. I like that. This card was even quicker to make. Stamp the justjohanna "thanks ever so"on matching cardstock, color with two red pencils and then attach to premade K & Co card. I added some stitching lines and some flowers I got from an old Self-Addressed kit. Done in ten minutes or less. Yet another quick thank you card. The card base is the K & Co premade card from a stack I got at Michael's for around $6. I stamped the espresso sentiment (justjohanna) and colored the letters with a brown prisma pencil. I stamped the mug (justjohanna) onto matching cardstock and then cut it out. I hand drew the steam. Nifty, huh? This last card is another layout I copied from "Cards" magazine. I got out a pack of Self-Addressed papers and went for it. It was easy peasy. I used my new Arabesque frame from justjohanna and the sentiment (jj) positioned inside the frame with my stamp-a-ma-jig. I added jewels around the frame, but I'm not so sure that was a great idea. Hmmm. I colored the frame with my favorite Prismacolor pencil - limepeel. Man, I LOVE that color!! That's it for today. Tomorrow I'm going to put down the paper and pick up some fabric. I've got some awesome projects in the works.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Green and Blue

I got my December Self-Addressed kit and I LOVE the papers in it this month. I love these greens, blues and browns together. Of course I'm in love with my Limepeel Prismacolor pencil, so this green reminds me of that and that's probably why I like these greens. I used Sylvie for the chick on this first card. The card layout was copied from the December "Cards" magazine. I learned this trick from Johanna. Go through the book and tag the pages you like and then systematically go through and copy each card. Match up dotted paper, stripes, etc. where you can or just copy the layout and pick your own papers. This card is 4x4 - my new favorite card size. I colored Sylvie with my Prismacolor pencils - limpeel and peacock blue. This card didn't photograph well at all. It's all the greens and I couldn't get it to get to the right color. I'm having major problems with my new scanner. It doesn't like 3D objects. It focuses on the closest item to the scanner glass and then everything else is blurry. I resorted to taking pictures under the Ott light with my digital camera. If this is the way I have to do it now, I'll have to photograph the cards outdoors in the natural light. This is Gigi and I gave her some glittery bobs on her head. This is the last card I copied from "Cards". This layout is very pleasing to my eye. I love the mix of papers on this card, too. The "indulge your passion" stamp is by justjohanna and I colored it with a brown marker. Gasp! A marker?! Yes, a marker, but it isn't blotchy or streaky, so I hope it passes the Johanna Test. Thanks for looking at my blog today. I'm home all week, so I'll be posting every day this week.

Monday, December 24, 2007

A few to get started

I started making some cards yesterday. Here are a few simple ones I made to get the juices flowing. The bad thing is, my new scanner doesn't seem to scan 3D very well. I noticed it blurs under the buttons, ribbons and brads. That is just not acceptable. I guess I'll have to monkey with the scanner today. Rats.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

What a naughty kitty!

Just look at that Priscilla. She is being so naughty! Phillipe was minding his own business swimming in the fish bowl, blowing bubbles when Priscilla snatched him out and ate him up, leaving a fishy skeleton. Naughty, naughty Priscilla. No candy for you.

Friday, December 21, 2007

A few cards to start the weekend

I made these two cards using the justjohanna December sketch. I love the "tis the season" sentiment because I can color the letters. Anything I can color is a good thing. Those are justjohanna reindeer chicklets. Aren't they adorable? I think you should have some. Check out the rest of the chicklets, too. What a great collection you could have! Just type "chicklets" in the search box on the page when you click the links above and you will see there are 4 pages of chicklets! Halloween chicklets, Easter chicklets, bride and groom chicklets, oh my! So many chicklets! (Thanks, Emily!) This second card is made with new stamps by justjohanna. I never would've thought to say "Hard Candy Christmas" but it works. It's a fun thing to say. Try it. See? It's fun. The pieces of candy are all one stamp, but I cut them out and glued them down in the order I wanted. I really suck at embellishments and it used to bother me, but now I just say "whatever" and carry on. I think embellishments can be way over done. This way, I'm showing more of the stamps than the embellishments. Well, that's my story and I'm sticking to it.

Where did the week go?

Wow, my last post was Monday. This week went by so quickly! I haven't made any more art this week because, well, guess why. Yep, my shoulder again. I has been nearly unbearably painful. Nearly impossible to sleep in bed or sit at the craft table. But, now, NOW I'm feeling better. Not perfect, but better and I'm ready to craft. I took some time off from work and I plan on doing some type of craft every day until January 2 when I go back to work. I bought myself a couple of gifts for my birthday and for Christmas. I got them from Memory Lane in Quakertown, PA. I visit that scrapbook store every time I visit my sister, so I just ordered from them. They are very friendly and accomodating and they have everything you could want in that store. Check out their blog. Here's gift number one: a Clip It Up. I thought it looked like an interesting and useful item to add to my already over-crowded craft table. I got it today and it is awesome! It sits about 26" high. There are two separate tiers. You get 80 clips for the bottom tier and 40 for the top. I plan on using the bottom tier for hanging cards to dry and for keeping my design team assignments handy and organized. I have a bad habit of placing something in a "safe place" and then never finding it until it's two weeks past due. As I find more uses for this thing, I'll keep you posted. I have made cards and taken them to work to sell. I have a photo box that I usually keep the cards in, but wouldn't the bottom tier of this Clip It Up be perfect for cards? Both tiers come with separators that you can label, so that would be just too cute for various card categories, I think. I may end up buying another one. Hear that Sarah? You may be hearing from me again. :) The other item I bought was a DreamKutz. When I bought my Bind-it-All last year, I looked at the DreamKutz, and thought it was a glorified paper cutter. Well, it IS a papercutter, but it is so cool. You put your 8.5x11 paper in, turn the crank and voila! You have perfectly cut paper for an A2 sized card. Sure, you can do that on your regular paper cutter, but I find that I either don't push the paper up next to all edges of the cutter, thereby getting cooked cuts or I don't hold down the plastic shield and the paper either moves or doesn't cut through all the way. I'm sick of that. I am very eager to give this puppy a workout in the next week. Oh, this little number also cuts 12x12 paper, too. Yee haw! Watch for a post every day for the next 10 days. I can't wait to spend some serious time in the craft lounge.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Happy Birthday, Mikey

Saturday was my brother-in-law, Mikey's, birthday. Ok, so he really isn't my brother-in-law, but he is related somehow. I think. Here's how it works. Try to follow along... This is the short version. Trust me.

Pam and I have been friends since 6th grade. I got married (the first time) in 1978. I married Steve. She was in my wedding. She got married (the first time) in 1978. She married David and I was in her wedding. I was a bridesmaid and John was an usher. We walked down the aisle together. John is David's brother. I got divorced 8 years later. Pam and David introduced me to John. John and I get married two years later. Now Pam and I are sisters-in-law. With me so far?

A few years after John and I got married, Pam and David split. Years later, I start working at the same place as Mikey. After a few years, he splits from his wife. Soon after that, I introduce Pam to Mikey. A short time later, they marry. So, Pam is no longer my sister-in-law but her twins are still my nephews because they are David's, too. So I consider her my sister-in-law, but more than that she is my sister.

I always tease Mikey that he is part of the family whether he likes it or not. And that is why I make him birthday cards. Whether he likes it or not.

P.S. I got this image from Jennifer and I am not ashamed to say I copied her coloring. A lot. Well, heck, she did such a great job, I just had to! Thanks for the images, Jennifer. BTW, your card is way better than mine.

Secret Santa Card

Tomorrow is "Secret Santa Day" in our department at work. We've all drawn names and so we exchange/deliver our gifts tomorrow. I'm not quite sure how the secret Santa thing works. Do you put your name on the gift or is it "secret"? I was thinking the secret Santa only meant that the person knew someone was buying you a gift but you didn't know who. Yet. Maybe I'm just a goof.

This is the card I made to go with the gift. It sure didn't scan well here. I used all justjohanna stamps. The outside stamp is the decorated tree and the inside setiment is Michelle's Merry Christmas sentiment. I'm not quite sure about the Peace and Joy brad in the upper left corner, either. Oh well. Not every card can be a masterpiece.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Great News!

If you read my blog, you've read that I've had a frozen shoulder with a lot of pain. Well, yesterday and today, no pain, BUT the shoulder is still frozen. I have been seeing an acupuncturist and he has done wonders with my shoulder. He does the needle thing and some awesome stretching massage. He is also certified in Egoscue, so we work on body positioning and stretching. I just can't believe how well this is working. I see him again tomorrow for more treatments, and I think I need to take him a little treat. If you are unfamiliar with the Egoscue Method, read a little interview here with Pete Egoscue. This really is an amazing form of physical therapy that is pain-free and gentle and IT WORKS! The book is amazing, too. If you have chronic pain, I strongly encourage you to buy the book and seek out a certified Egoscue therapist. I'm tellin' ya, I feel like crafting!!!

Friday, December 07, 2007

Princess for a Day

I was a Princess for a day!

Tomorrow is my birthday and my coworkers surprised me by decorating my cubicle. How fun is that? They decorated it up with pink streamers, white fluffy boas and pink and purple crowns with a "50" in the middle. I even had a tiara what lit up (you can almost see it in all my red hair) and a magic wand. Oh, and I got my favorite kind of birthday cake: white cake with white frosting. YUMMY! I really felt special.

They gave me some really cool gifts, too. I got some beautiful coffee mugs, picture frames, some really pretty kitchen towels and a neato basket that was made out of dried seaweed. If that last thing sounds yucky, it's not. It's gorgeous. The seaweed dried into a leather-like consistency and it is hard. I didn't get a picture of my stuff before I took it all home and put it away. Oh, I also got some very cool flowers. Check them out here:

It is a hand-painted margarita glass. It has peaches on it and then the flowers are put inside the glass. It comes in a neat box that has a recipe for peach margaritas on the bottom. Aren't the flowers gorgeous?

I took the picture next to this year's vacation picture with my sister and brother-in-law. The picture frame and margarita glass just seemed to go together somehow.

Tomorrow is my real birthday and my friends Pam and Judy are taking me up to Temecula to go antique shopping and quilt store shopping. Oh, and we will eat. Yes, we will eat. In the evening, I have plans to either go barhopping in Hillcrest or go see Eek-a-Mouse down at Cane's in San Diego. If it is raining cats and dogs, I'll just stay home and have John rub my feet all night.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

I did it!

Over on the justjohanna forum, Kim F. put out a challenge to make a card a day for the 12 day of Christmas. Since I hadn't made any cards in awhile (see post below), I thought I'd try and see how far I got. Since I needed to make some thank you cards for the birthday gifts I've received, I thought I'd make some small cards. I made about 10 cards like this. They measure 4x4 and all stamps are by justjohanna. The paper is Infuse from Basic Grey. I used my white Sharpie pen to color the music notes and the word. Thanks Kim, for the challenge. I think you got me going now. (My arm does hurt, but not so much I couldn't finish.)

Where are all the cards??

I just wanted to say why I have not made cards in a few weeks. I have a very badly frozen left shoulder. It has been frozen for over 6 months and it has been hard to deal with from the beginning, but the past 2-3 weeks have been the worst. I have been getting physical therapy, massage therapy and acupuncture to try and get this shoulder loosened up. We are all making progress, but it is a very painful one. It is very difficult for me to sit and craft, reaching for items and using any kind of exertion with my left arm. I tried sitting at my craft table last night to make even one card, but I just couldn't. The only reason I can type is because my hands and arms are resting on the gel pad in front of the keyboard. I miss my craft room and my rubber stamps so much! I can't wait to get back to them. I'm hoping with the concentrated efforts of my acupuncturist and my massage therapist, I'll be on the mend soon.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Here they are, Here they are!!

Johanna has announced the new Design Team for justjohanna rubber stamps! Congratulations, everyone!

You Want Fries with That?

Ok, today is my day to talk about the people behind the speakers in the drive-thru’s. I know you know what I’m talking about. Here’s how the conversation went today when I went to George Burgers for lunch. “Welcon to Chorch Burger, can I help you?” “Yes, I’d like a fish taco and a small coke.” “What kin’ taco you want? Beef?” Sigh. “No, I want a fish taco.” “Ok, fish taco. Anyteen else?” “Yes! A small coke.” “Tank you. Please drive up.” Ok, first of all, I cannot drive UP. They have not equipped BMW’s with an UP gear. I can drive forward, but not UP. Second, she didn’t tell me how much my order was and I couldn’t see the sign with the sun in my face, but I think the taco was $2.39. I figured about $3.50-$4.00 tops. There are three vehicles in front of me and George’s is known to be a bit slow, but that’s ok because their food is excellent, so I wait. Finally, it’s my turn at the window. She shows up at the window and says, “Five fifteen.” I shrug and hand over the $5.15 thinking that the price of the taco must’ve gone up. Either that or she charged me for some gigantor coke. Now I wait. And wait. AND wait. Seven minutes at the window. “Sheesh, this is taking a long time,” I think to myself, wishing my satellite radio was working because there was a good song on before I went under the overhang. Watching inside, everyone is working but no one is coming to the window. What’s that? I see someone and she is headed my way! Oh darn, she gets on the phone at the drive-thru (or is it drive UP?) window. Ok, so I wait some more. They must be out catching the fish and that means this is gonna be some really tasty fish taco! Three more minutes and then someone heads towards the window with a food box. Hooray! She hands me the box and I don’t even look inside. I put it on the seat beside me and she turns to walk away, but I say, “My coke?” She gives me a blank look and then the gal on the phone says, “You no order coke. You order two fish tacos!” Excuse me. I guess I did. I can’t even understand myself sometimes.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Printers are a pain in the butt!

I have had this HP 950 All-in-One printer for years. It has been my second best friend. Until now. Why do printers stop working? This printer scans like a dream. It makes decent color copies, including photo, but now, NOW! it won't work. Whenever I try to scan or make a copy, it just sits there and the message says, "Warming Up". I even went to the HP website and downloaded the newest drivers. No difference. Grrrr, I hate it when this happens. Fortunately, I got a free Epson All-in-One printer last month when I bought my laptop. I prefer HP printers, but oh well, free is free. Oh, and another thing... I bought an HP black laserjet printer last month and it doesn't work, either. I think it is the printer because I thought I was buying a new one and this one had been repackaged. It didn't even include the installation disk, and my Windows XP wouldn't recognize the printer. I'm just not having very good luck with printers these days. I can only post my cards and art via my digital camera. I guess that's better than nothing, right?

Friday, November 30, 2007

First Fire, Now Rain

If the fires weren't bad enough, now it's raining. It's been raining since about 5am. I just checked and so far, we've gotten 2.54" since then. It's raining at about the rate of .13" per hour. See here's the thing... First the fires burn all the plants, leaving the hillsides and mountains bare, and now the rain comes and causes mudslides. Fantastic. I have no problems at my house. This rain will actually be beneficial since the ground in my yard is very hard. Now I can pull all those weeds I've been meaning to get to but never wanted to because it was too much work. It'll be easy peasy now. If it stops raining enough tomorrow, I'll be outside in the mud. YAY! I bought some Peeps today.

Monday, November 26, 2007

What's that chicken noise?

Okay. Confession time. I have a hard time getting up in the morning. I always have. I am a night owl, and the thought of getting up before 6am just makes me cringe, but I have to do it if I want to keep my day job. I thought the time change would be great since my morning clock would be an hour earlier, but no, it adjusted better to the night and now I just stay up later. This is how bad it is with the alarm clock.... I have this cat, Gizmo. He is a Bengal and he has been declawed. Now wait, don't go all PETA on me because he's declawed. I didn't do it. I inherited the cat and it was done to him before I got him. Calm down. So when my alarm would go off in the mornings, he would paw at my face and the blankets around my face and I would wake up enough to put him under the covers. He was bugging me. He didn't really want to go under the covers and I realized the alarm was going off and that was the reason why he was pawing at the covers. So I guess I wasn't paying enough attention to Gizmo and he gave up. Then Frankie, my littlest orange tabby, took over. Except she has nails. She sticks one of her sharp little nails into whatever body part is sticking out of the covers when the alarm goes off. That wakes me up and then I hear the alarm. Well, after finding all these little red poke holes all over my body, I decided enough was enough. I had to get a different alarm. I bought a cheapie little electric alarm clock at Longs this weekend. Just your basic plug-it-in-and-go model. So last night at 10:00, I set my old clock to 5:30am and the new clock to 5:45am, brushed my teeth, took my pills and went to bed. I woke up hearing my regular alarm at 5:35am. I hit the snooze. Then I felt Frankie snuggle in next to me on the bed. Then the 5:45am alarm clock went off and I got out of bed, did a few shoulder stretches and got in the shower. Gizmo loves to sit on the toilet and watch the water in the shower. Don't get all weird on me again, he is not watching ME, he is watching the WATER! Bengals love water. So I'm done with my shower and I'm squeegee-ing the shower door, when I hear "cock-a-doodle-doo", only in the real bird sound and kind of soft-like. Ok, that was weird, I think to myself. I wonder who got a rooster? So as I'm getting out of the shower, I grab my towel and start to dry off with Gizmo watching me (ok he is watching ME at this point), and I hear "cock-a-doodle-doo" again, only louder. Hmm, I say to myself and to Gizmo, what the heck is that? "Cock-a-doodle-doo!!" went the rooster again! This time, Gizmo's eyes get really big and he is looking into the bedroom. I walk into the bedroom and hear "Cock-a-doodle-doo!!!" again and look towards the sound, thinking it's going to be a rooster in my bedroom, but nope. It was my cell phone!! I guess in a senior moment, I set it to go off at 6am with the rooster sound. I've always said I could sleep through a tornado or a supernova explosion, and now you know. I need 3 alarms to get my butt out of bed in the mornings. I wonder if I could sleep through the rooster? Thank god for Saturdays. I can sleep in!

Thursday, November 22, 2007


Happy Thanksgiving to all of my friends and family. I am fortunate to have each and every one of you in my life. You inspire me, encourage me and keep me down to earth when I tend to fly off on my tangents. Thank you for your compassion, your caring and your love. I send it all right back at ya 200%. Happy Thanksgiving, my friends. I love you all.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

So many projects, so little time

My blog needs updating. My house needs to be cleaned. My taxes need to be done. I need to balance my checkbook. Phone calls to make. Designs to finish, stamps to be made. Painting to be done. Closets to clean.
I totally missed Mercury. Jupiter is in my house and I don't feel it. Not yet. Just go with the flow. One project at a time. Don't stress.
What's with the Christmas carols already??

Thursday, November 15, 2007

So Berry Sweet

These stamps are some recent additions to the justjohanna line. I love strawberries and I love these stamps. I think the strawberry topiary is just the cutest! Well, not the cutest of all justjohanna stamps, but it rates right up there! I colored this stamp with Prismacolor pencils. Some day I will write down all the colors I use. Actually, the list would probably be shorter if I wrote down the colors I did NOT use. I just love using lots of colors and blending, blending, blending. I hand drew the scallopy edge on the topiary section. This card is A2 size. This next card was done using a 2x2 piece of Stampbord. First, I stamped the images on the blank Stampbord and then I inked up the Stampbord with various Versamark Chalk inks in the colors I wanted in the particular areas: red & green. Then I used a stamp positioner to stamp the images again over the top of the previous image. I used a fine point black pen to draw the lines around the images. After it dried, I used the scratch knife to scratch out the white areas on the Stampbord. I drew the scallopy edge. This card is 4x4.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

It's Peep-a-lishus!

Look what I found at the Goodwill yesterday. Peep candles!
These will go into the Peep shrine. I may share a photo of the shrine sometime, but right now it is in a secret place. Only the Peeps know where to go.
Peeps are tasty, marshmallow goodness.

It's about time

This was my grandfather's watch. His name was Sidney and he died back in 1977, and of his treasures, I received his pocket watch. I know, that seems like a strange thing to pass down to a granddaughter, but I will tell you why I got his watch.
I remember my parents buying me watches and a month or so later the watch would stop working. These were wind-up watches, so they thought I was overwinding them, but I wasn't. Watch after watch the same thing would happen, so when the battery operated watches became available, I'd buy those, but within months, the watch would die. Time after time this happened so I just quit wearing watches. I have a drawer full of watches I've bought because they were beautiful or trendy, but the same thing happens to all watches on me.
Then I found out that that was the reason Grandpa wore a pocket watch. Wrist watches stopped working when he wore them, too. I did a little research a while back, and it turns out we have some magnetic or electrical "thing" in our bodies that interferes with the workings of the watch.
This was the last watch Grandpa Sid owned before he died. It isn't an expensive watch nor is it very pretty, but it was Grandpa's and I feel the connection to him every time I look at it on my dresser.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Christmas Cards - justjohanna style

Did you know that justjohanna has a new holiday supplement out now? You MUST check it out. There are some very cool stamps there. I LOVE the new 12 day of Christmas stamps. They are so creative! For this first card, I've used the two Baby Dango Reindeer, the Tree Whimsey, the Gingerbread Star and the Rockin' sentiment. I colored the images with Prismacolor pencils. I just love those reindeer, don't you? I wanted to make a card that said it came from a warm location, so I chose to do this card. I think the colors even make it look tropical, don't you? For this card I used the Holiday Palm and the Warm Wishes sentiment. That's it. I colored the tree with the Prismas. I color everything with Prismas. I just got an order from Dick Blick with some Prismas in it, but I found out that I didn't order enough, so I guess I'm ordering again. Darn!

This last card was fun to make. I used the Holly Sleigh, Annabelle Birthday Left, Claude Turtledove Left, Mouse Reindeer Left and the Loot sentiment. I drew in the reins and colored all the images with my Prismas.

You can find all these great images AND MORE on the justjohanna website in the new holiday supplement. If you would like to order some stamps, you'll have to go here. Start making a list, you'll want lots of them.

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Sunday afternoon

I've been working hard on some southwestern cards for a magazine. I'll post some cards later today, but right now I'm off to The Pink Pineapple for a photography class. See you later, alligators!

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Oh happy craft supplies day

Oh happy day! I got my Dick Blick order today. I got the oh-so-tempting-sale flyer last week and couldn't resist stocking up on a few things.

As you can see here, I got a crapload of canvas boards. Hey, the smallest ones were only 34 cents each! Here's what I got: six 4x4 panels, four 6x6, four 8x8, six 4x6, two 5x7, four 6x12 and two 8x10 panels. That's 28 fantastic panels to paint on and goof around with. The total? A whopping $13.74. Oh and I got some of those cool white Sharpie pens; two each of the broad and thin tips. And I got 38 replacement Prismacolor pencils and 4 replacement black Verithin pencils. I feel like it's my birthday!

Next step: put some paint on those canvases. Hooray. I'm planning on making some Christmas present with these. I'll post what I can. My sister looks at my blog all the time and I don't know about my nieces or my mom, so I won't be posting their stuff. I will have stuff to post in the next week. You can see my practice stuff. Thanks for stopping by. I appreciate your traffic.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Halloweener!

Happy Halloweener, everyone! This is my favorite holiday of the YEAR!!

Isn't this little guy so cute? I borrowed him from this website of weiner dog art.

I'm not feeling particularly festive today. I didn't even dress up like I usually do. Honestly, I'm having a very hard time with the devastation from these fires. The fires did not burn my house, my property or even anywhere near me, but I am very bothered by what has happened. I just feel unsettled and anxious and sad. I can't imagine what other people have gone through. Tami was evacuated from her home and by some luck in the universe, her home was still standing when she was allowed back home. I'm very grateful for that. I can't really put my finger on what is really bothering me, but something is and I need to get to the crux of it because it is making me nuts.

Those scary little trick-or-treaters will have to get candy somewhere else tonight, because I'm locking the door and turning off the light. I'm just not in the mood.

Tomorrow will be a better day. Oh, yeah, Oct 31-Nov 2 is Dia de los Muertos. I wish we'd celebrate that day, too.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Monday is officially "Recycling Monday"

Since the big Blog Action Day events about global warming and such, I've been thinking a lot about my part in the whole thing. As one person, I can't do it all, but I can do my part. If we all did our part, it could be amazing. So I've committed myself (no not like to an institution) to doing a new earth-friendly thing each week. I will post on Mondays and you can comment on the new thing that you've done to not contribute to pollution, global warming, etc. It can be a simple as walking to the post office, starting to recycle cardboard, cans, etc. You get the idea.
So, what did I do today? Well, when I went to Sprouts to get my teas and veggies, I picked up some of those canvas shopping bags. They were on sale for 99 cents each. I bought 12 of them. These are big green tote bags with the Sprouts logo on them. You take them into the store and you have the bagger put your groceries in them instead of paper or plastic. You can get more groceries into each bag and they are sturdier than paper or plastic, too. So, head out to your local farmers marketplace or local produce store and pick up some canvas bags.
Here is a link I found for some of the bags: BAGS. Hey, you could even make your own bags, how about that?
Also, if you have some recycling hints, post in the comments section. And don't forget to post what you've done to help the environment this week.

Friday, October 26, 2007

I made a thing

Yeah, so I made this thing.
When Julie made us (haha) make these Christmas ornaments last weekend, it got me to thinking about making personalized ornaments. This isn't an ornament. It's just a thing.
I picked up a few of these paper mache heart things at Michael's. I first painted the whole thing with Mod Podge. I did that because, as Julie explained about the Gesso, if I didn't put down a base coat first, the paint would just soak up into the thing and get all yucky. I used the matte finish Mod Podge. Then I got out some of my cheapo acrylic paints and painted in the colors I liked. I chose a couple of pinks and painted them all messy-like all over front, sides and back. While that was drying, I picked out the stamps I was going to use. I picked the old ladies stamp by River City Rubber Works and the sentiment by Stampabilities.
After the pink paints dried, I painted on some green and some blue. I let that dry just a little, and then I took a damp paper towel and rubbed some of the paint off so the pink would show through. I let that dry. I dipped a dry paintbrush into the apricot paint and lightly tapped it onto the front, sides and back of the thing.
Then I inked the old ladies up with black StazOn ink and stamped it on the thing. It didn't stamp well so I got my StazOn stamp cleaner out and rubbed off the icky image. I knew it wouldn't bother the acrylic paint because the StazOn cleaner is not water-based. Then I decided to stamp with the StazOn on vellum. I cut out the image and then Mod Podged it on to the heart thing. That worked really well, except I really had to watch for wrinkles and bubbles in the vellum. I had to lift the vellum and do a bit of adjusting. I put lots and lots of Mod Podge on top of the vellum.
I stamped the sentiment on striped paper and then cut out each word. I Mod Podged each word onto the thing where I wanted them and the put more Mod Podge over the whole ornament again. I let it dry in front of the fan and then I got out a regular old black sharpie and made dots all around the edges of the thing and around the image. I signed the back. The thing is done.
It felt good to craft again after being glued to the fire coverage on tv all week. I have another thing in the works. Stay tuned.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

FIRE - update 8:15am Chargers

Hi everyone. Thank you for your concern and attention to the tragedy that has hit southern California. It is really a mess down here. The wildfires have made their mark yet again, but fortunately, only a few lives have been lost. I believe 1 or 2 from San Diego County and maybe the same number in Orange County. So many people have been evacuated and displaced but things seems to be working out. There are lots of people at Qualcomm Stadium in San Diego. The Chargers are supposed to play Houston on Sunday, but that may or may not happen. When they thought the stadium would be full of people, they moved the Chargers to Phoenix for practice. They thought, well maybe we can just move the game to the Cardinals' stadium, but there is a motorcycle event there on Sunday. If the game was in Phoenix, many San Diegans would go because it's only an hour flight to Phoenix from here. Next thing I heard was that they would play in Dallas. Dallas?! Yes. We couldn't give the Texans the home field advantage because it was OUR home field advantage, so they picked Houston's rival, Dallas, for the home field. That really sucks. Ok, but NOW I heard on the radio this morning, that since so many of the fire evacuees have been allowed to return home, they may move the rest of them from Qualcomm to other shelters to that we can have the game at home. YIPPEE! It's up to Jerry Sanders now to make the decision. Keep your fingers crossed. I need a diversion from the fires. I know I haven't reported much on the fires in the past few days. Nothing much is happening in our area and I'm not glued to the television as in the beginning, so I've nothing really to report. I did see the news last night and saw some of the devastation. It just breaks your heart to see so many homes destroyed. The good thing is, they are just homes. Brick and mortar. No lives were lost. I saw one couple standing outside their home and they said they had lost their home in the Cedar fire of 2003, too. I hope they rebuild somewhere else now. I don't think that location is meant to have a house on it. Our Governator has been visiting the area. I'll bet he visited the Orange County fire area as well. He has been much more proactive with resources for us than Davis did. I won't go on and on about this. If you live here, you know. I heard Bush was supposed to be here yesterday or today or something. Oh great, a live speech from the President. What speech will he bumble through this time? I think he's been in office too long. He's used up all his words and can't put two words together that make sense. That's all for now. I may post later tonight and post some cards I've made. I'll leave you with this: do a RAK (Random Act of Kindness) today. What would the world be if everyone did a RAK every day? Wow. Oh, and recycle.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

FIRE - update 9:00pm

Ok, here are some photos I took today after work. The first picture was taken from my back yard. It is looking west as the sun went down. It really was that orange outside. Kind of creepy, huh? It was smoky and there was a lot of ash in the air. These next two pictures are of one view of San Marcos, traveling north on Twin Oaks Valley Road. We live just up this road a bit further north than you can see in this picture. I wanted to show the smoke level over this part of San Marcos. Right at the bottom of this hill are a bunch of apartments and California State University San Marcos. The University (CSUSM) has been closed for this week. It's weird since there wasn't much traffic on the road when I was and it was even 5:30pm- rush hour. The Coronado Hills fire, the one that is now 100% contained, was up on the hill to the right in this picture. In the next picture, you can almost see the burnt areas near the road. Most of the fire was was up on the mountain. I couldn't stop to take a picture because the road is so steep and I didn't want to get in trouble with the Sheriff by being a looky-loo. This picture was taken looking west. I was at the top of the hill on Twin Oaks Valley Road. To the north (previous picture) is the City of San Marcos, and this picture is the community of San Elijo Hills, a community of about 3,000 homes on the south side of Mt. Whitney. No, not THE Mt. Whitney, the San Marcos Mt. Whitney. :) Anyhoo, this picture was enhanced. I used the sunset setting on my camera to bring out the colors of the hills and the sky. This sky is so smoky. I love how it makes for beautiful sunsets, but then again, it is smoke. Here is the road heading north on Twin Oaks Valley Road. The two hills that look like a part of a woman's anatomy (Did you know it is Breast Cancer Awareness Month? It was a cheap plug, but I'll take what I can get.) is where the Coronado Hills fire was. Parts of San Elijo Hills were evacuated because they were afraid the fire would jump the road and race through the canyon towards La Costa and on into Encinitas through San Elijo Hills. This is another view of the same mountains just to show the smoke coming from the east. Just beyond Coronado Hills to the east, is Harmony Grove. Harmony Grove is a very wooded homes area and the fire was very close when I took the picture. All the residents of Harmony Grove were evacuated. The next picture was taken in Escondido. I wanted to see if I could see the flames from the Witch Creek fire as it moved up Palomar Mountain but all I got was smoke. Palomar Mountain is east of San Marcos. Palomar has been the victim of many fires. It's just so sad to see it burning again. Tonight the fire is blazing on the mountain. The fire is on the ridge of the mountain and looks like a glowing snake. I can't resist taking pictures of the sun going down in all this haze. Such pretty colors. The last picture was taken while driving west on the 78 near the 15. You can see the smoke above and below the yellow haze. That's all I have for now. I don't think I will have any pictures of the actual fire. I hope I don't, anyways. If I get pictures of flames, it will because the Witch Creek fire has gone through Harmony Grove and up Coronado Hills again.