Wednesday, June 30, 2010

O. M. G.

You Can't Be Serious

I can't believe the sudden flooding of supernatural classics .  Really - I can't (this image doesn't even represent all of them)!  Pride and Prejudice and Zombies was interesting and fresh - but Jane Slayre!  Seriously?  If you look closely - the classics are written by two authors - the original and a contemporary.  I wasn't a big fan of PPZ.  Truth be known - I'm not a big fan of classics.  I think they're a snooze fest and way too difficult to read with their antiquated speech.  I realize this shallow-mindedness is my loss - but I'm okay with that.  I don't get it - I don't get this new trend at all.  I wonder if it's a way to get people like me to read the classics in some form with a modern twist similar to putting sugar in medicine for kids.  I'm not buying it - not at all.  Wait - before I become a complete hypocrite -  I'm more than curious about Abraham Lincoln Vampire Hunter.  I might need to buy that one.  I just need a guinea pig to read it first - I have one in mind.  So that's my random musing for today.  I'm awaiting some interesting news in the next couple of days.  Despite the fact I have no expectations (safer that way), I'm a little giddy.  I hope everyone has a nice Wednesday.  Until then...

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Inspiration Station

(Click on the image for larger view. Please find credits and links at the end of this post.)

A few years ago, my sister told me about the yellow and gray color scheme. She even showed me the Ashley Citron Duvet set. I immediately vetoed the idea stating that it was not good and didn't make a lot of sense to me. Cut to the spring of 2010 - I am totally in love with this color combination. It really started to click when I started watching Sarah's House on HGTV. In her farmhouse, she has two yellow and gray color schemes and it's just so lovely and calming. I know - who ever thought yellow was calming? I plan on using this scheme in my bedroom - if I ever get a chance to redo it. Adding the vintage blue or pale blue-green is a real revelation for me. I think it adds to the soothing effect. Love it.

This brings me to my final thoughts. Scrapbooking and cardmaking have really opened up a new world to me. Prior to starting my crafty/handmade life - I was really stagnant when it came to colors. Now - I've embraced green, orange and yellow. I absolutely love these colors. While I still love my blues - I find myself looking to other colors more which just tickles me pink. There are so many great things that come into your life through crafting and it's not just having a chronicle of your life or being able to brighten someone's day with a handmade card. It permeates your life in the smallest and most meaningful ways. I feel better for it. Love this hobby so much. Love the two ladies that introduced me and support me in this crafty life. I feel so blessed. I hope everyone has a great Tuesday. I have a few errands to run but nothing too daunting. Until then...

Credits and Links
1. Original Painting - Petals in Gray Sky by StudioEriksdotter; 2. Unknown - Grabbed this photo a bit ago - can't remember where; 3. Ashley Citron Duvet set by Bliss Living; 4. Breath of Spring by urbandesign; 5. Impressions of Paris - 9 Fine Photographs in Yellow by littlebrownpen; 6. Think Happy Thoughts by hipheartt; 7. Yellow and Gray - Set of Three Tiny Flower Bobby Pins by Acute Designs; 8. Gray and Yellow Concrete - p-nut bowl by Impurevessels; 9. Clutch Zipper Purse by atomique47; 10. Mod Flora no. 8 - circle pendant by Snappypendants; 11. Optic Blossom Bag by atouchofstardust; 12. French Rose Pillow in Grey and Mustard Yellow by dedeetsyshop ; 13. Feathery Plumes No. 1 watercolor painting by Golly Bard; 14. Black and Yellow Bunting Invitations by allieruth; 15. Love by vol25; 16. Linen pincushion crochet motif by namolio; 17. Simplicity by the TheInspiredElement; 18. Something Blue Hair Pins by MiaBeads.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Tuesday Trigger & Roo

Happy Monday!  I know - it's easy to say that when summer break is part of your work life.  I will say a few things. I know how hard Mondays are - it's like looking down the barrel of a gun some weeks.  I have the kind of job that if you didn't get a summer break, I don't think many people could do it without having a nervous breakdown.  Finally, with my health the way it is - summer break is a necessity.  I think summer breaks are literally adding more years to my working life - which is huge for me.  Still - my heart goes out to all of my friends that work full-time, year-round.  Feel free to shake your fists or call me names - I  totally understand.   I'm not sure if that diatribe was necessary but there it is.  On to happier things...

The Moxie Fab World blog (sponsored by Paper Crafts magazine) has a weekly challenge called Tuesday Trigger.  For months - I've wanted to participate in one of the weekly triggers but things just haven't worked out.  When I went on the blog last week, I immediately knew I wanted to participate in this trigger.  So - what got me so inspired?  Beyond the fact the top is absolutely brilliant and fun, I was really taken by the color scheme and the floral print.  My original plan was to use one of my large Hero Arts cling flowers on the page.  However - as time went on - I new I wanted to take another stab at doing a card like this one.

This card is completely out of my comfort zone.  I never had done a card like this before.  If you would have asked me before making it - I would have said - 'never in a million years will I make a card like that.'  Thank God for my change of mind or brave streak or whatever.  I love it now.  I haven't tried anything like it since.  Something about the trigger photo made me think of it - and then I was off and running.  I decided to go with a Hero Arts image - just not a floral one.

I'm a big fan of cityscapes.  I have several stamps of this sort - but rarely bring them out for stamping.  This stamp is part of Hero Arts summer release and was on top of my wanted list the moment I saw it.  I'm very satisfied with the result.  Originally - I had a yellow button in the upper right corner.  I didn't really think I had a sentiment that worked.  Then I remembered the sentiment from Amuse and knew it was perfect.  Love it.  I stamped three images and did some fussy cutting to create a dimensional look.

Anyhoo - I went to the Moxie Fab blog this morning and imagine my surprise when I found out the project was due last night - the night I finally got off my rear to do something.  I assumed the deadline would be today.  I need to read the fine print more.  Despite my screw up - I'm really happy with the card.

I thought I'd end this post with a pic of my Roo Girl.  This is her new spot when I post.  It's where my Xyron and paper are stored.  I don't think it could possibly be comfortable - but she loves it.  The picture is at a weird angle (I was trying to do something funky).  I hope everyone has a nice Monday.  I think I might be getting paybacks from my earlier comments  on Monday.  My computer crashed three times in the writing of this post.  Not so good.  I'm happy it's finally done.  Blessings all around.  Until then...

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Is Less Really More?

There have been a few things pointing me to one question lately - what the heck is my style?  A few weeks ago, I was listening to Paperclipping Roundtable's Episode 12 and Tim Holtz was talking about Ali Edwards's style.  He defined it as classic - sort of like Pottery Barn.  I've always admired Ali's style or maybe I've admired the fact that she can define her style.  Last night - I was looking through an old special CK issue - 101 Expert Solutions - and came across a statement that got me thinking more.  Jill Hornby mentioned letting the picture be the star in her layouts and not using too many embellishments.  I am big into embellishments.  I envy Christine Middlecamp's style but I can't afford the amount of embellishments she uses on each page.  But it got me wondering - do I use too many elements on my pages? And then the more important question started to creep in my head - what is my style?

So I decided to do some investigating. I'm pretty sure of my cardmaking style - layers, stamped images, coloring, buttons and flowers.  Easy peasy.  Scrapbooking?  Not so much.  I tried to think of my favorite scrapbook pages.  These are the few that I chose -

If someone can tell me a theme I would really appreciate it - I know I'm not any closer to an answer.  This is what I see -

*I love patterned paper
*I'm drawn to one-photo layouts more than multi-photo layouts
*I love one-page layouts - I rarely do two page layouts.  I might have five in my entire cache.
*I'm crazy about flowers.
*I'm heavy on journaling.  When I start a page - I always start with story.
*I'm big on everyday stories.  I don't event scrapbook.
*I love to layer.
*Clearly a big fan of embellishments.
*I like titles to stand out on the page.
*I don't use traditional pictures to tell a story if it's something I feel really needs to be told.  Case in point - the wish layout is all about me but something about that picture of Tonks captured the feeling I wanted to convey. 

Does any of that fit into one style?  Got me!  It's frustrating not having a word to define what I am.  Eclectic?  Trendy? Who knows?  I do know one thing - man, I wish I had a style.  I'm sure other crafters feel this way.  I wish I was more like my three crafting buddies.  They don't seem to care about defining what their style is.  And because of that - I think they have a definitive style.  They also play and experiment more than I'm ever comfortable doing. I know it must seem silly moaning about style when there are so many other important things to think about.  I just can't shake it.  Someone please help.  Anyhoo - I'm going to try and stay calm.  I'm going to run errands and then craft hard with Crate Paper.  I hope everyone has a nice Saturday.  Until then...

BTW: Even though I'm still freaking out a little - writing down elements of my style is comforting.

Friday, June 25, 2010

No More Promises

A girl should not make promises she cannot keep.  It's a rule of sorts.  I'm breaking it today.  My fun technique did not turn out so well for me - while it did for my friends (very happy about that!).  The wax paper shifted and nothing is straight.  What the hell - here's a picture of my "mistake."

It's not the best picture in the world - but hopefully you get the gist.  The technique is super simple.  I think it might work better on less intricate designs.  I used the collage embossing folder from Tim Holtz.  I'm sure it can be salvaged in some way - just not sure how in this moment.  I'm pretty stumped at this point.

Since I'm not sharing the project I did with my technique - I thought I'd share some semi-recent scrapbook pages.  The first page is from the beginning of the year.   It's a direct scraplift from Elizabeth Kartchner from her Dear Lizzy column in Creating Keepsakes.  When I say direct - I mean direct.  Basically I changed the colors and a few other things.  The second page is based on a theme from one of women in my circle journal group.  She wanted to know three places we would visit if money and time were no object.  I could only pick two.  I'm a homebody and don't think about going too many places.  The third page is about my favorite little guy in the world right now.

Isn't that the best picture you've ever seen of a baby ever!  Love him so much.  The last two layouts were inspired by two sketches from Pencil Lines.  Paradise is based loosely on this sketch.  Flying By is based on this sketch. So that's it for now.  I hope everyone has a great Friday!  I have a date with Hero Arts.  Until then...

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Here, There, Everywhere!

Inspiration is a funny thing.  It can come in all different shapes, sizes, images, etc.  Some of my favorite sources of inspiration include, fabric, interior design, nature, patterns, blogs, and the list goes on.  Lately I've been obsessed with interior design.  I don't really have a defined style when it comes to my home or fashion.  I'm not really that girl.  However, since I've been watching "Sarah's House" on HGTV - I've been obsessed with vintage, handmade, pattern, reusable bits of furniture, etc.  And from this one little show, I think my style has started to emerge.  I've finally started to pinpoint things I like instead of the things I don't.  Who would've guesses that I would love antiques, barn wood for the floor and walls, and yellow so much?  It's been something of a eurkea moment for me - just one more thing summer vacation makes possible for me - time to learn more about myself.

This morning I had the drive to search for interior design blogs that might satiate my new thirst for all things home.  I found a lot of great blogs.  I even added three to the What's Inspiring Me Now column.  I found a picture of a color scheme that really speaks to me on the Coco + Kelley blog.  So much so - that I'm thinking about whether it would be a good direction for my bedroom.  I'm desperately in need of a change. 

I absolutely love the gray, cream, black, and coral color scheme.  I have grand plans to use this color scheme on a handmade card or scrapbook layout.  I love everything about each little picture (minus the tomato book).  I even love the kitchen showcased on the blog.  It seems so fresh and beautiful. I can't wait to start investigating these colors more through my crafts.  So fun.

Today: I have big crafty plans.  I am having the first (of hopefully many) crafty afternoons with two of my favorite people.  Our plan is to bring one fun technique to show or try.).  I'm bring this technique to the table.  I've never tried it before - but I'm hopeful due to this embossing folder by Tim Holtz.

I promise to post the results in the next couple of days.  The remainder of our crafty time will be spent on any current crafty projects we've been working on.  I'm not sure what project I'll be bringing.  I might actually scrapbook.  I haven't done enough of that lately.  I'll have more to report tomorrow.  I also have two layouts to post.  I completed both at the beginning of the week.  Time for breakfast, coffee, and then some light reading until it's time to get ready to go.  I hope everyone has a wonderful Thursday. Until then...

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Movie Madness

I just finished this movie - maybe thirty minutes ago and was frankly amazed at how much I liked it.  It's not a happy movie (to say the least) and there's a twist at the end that seems to have given some critics and audience members whiplash.  I don't remember this movie coming out.  I don't remember seeing a trailer until it was being released on DVD.  I immediately knew I wanted to see it - Rob Patt with a natural complexion was enough to get me on board.  I didn't imagine it would be this sad or controversial.  

After watching the movie, one of the first things I did was look for movie reviews and audience comments.  I couldn't find many, but I did learn a few things.  

*The movie was released on limited screens and didn't get much support in terms of marketing.  

*I'm definitely not highbrow when it comes to movies - because I thought it was really good, even touching at times.

*I'm evidently a 33-year-old girl in a teenage body because some critics described the movie as an indie romance only teens could enjoy.

*This kind of a surprise ending is not well perceived.  I don't want to give anything away.   I will say one thing - I was completely shocked by the ending. 

*I will never understand critics or commentators.  Period.  For example, "There Will be Blood" was critically acclaimed and frankly I wish I could get back the minutes/hours of my life I spent watching it.  While this little film, was not viewed positively.

*Rob Pattinson has some acting chops - which is hard to see when all he is doing is pining for the human girl with no personality.  Don't get me wrong - I love Twilight.  It's just that Bella drives me nuts.

So - that's it, my two cents for today.  I wish I could recommend this movie - but I'm reticent because of the reactions to the ending.  I enjoyed it - for whatever that's worth.  If you're in the dumps - I'd pass.  It's really the kind of movie that could push you over the edge.  I plan to spend the rest of the day doing more happy things, like replenishing my mom's cards supplies and maybe doing a scrapbook page or two.  I hope this Wednesday finds you well.  Until then...

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

My Story

What happens when you can't do it anymore?  When you can't trust your doctor or their "plans" for you?  I've had regular visits and procedures for the last thirteen years of my life.  I'm sick and tired of doctor's appointments, waiting rooms, IV needles, blood pressure cuffs, pharmacies, and the list goes on.  I long to be free of it.  Unfortunately, it is a reality I can never escape.  My life would grind to a halt if I walked away from modern medicine.  I know that.  I'm blessed to have it.  It's just that some days get me down - way down - low.  Today is not a good day.  I have lost a little faith.  Tomorrow will be better.  Tomorrow I plan for what's next.  Tomorrow I start to decide what's best for me - so I can rebuild that trust.  Trust me - I need it.  Until then...

Monday, June 21, 2010

Product Love & More

It's been a long time since I've served up any product love - but I saw this stamp on a blog and just knew I was back in business.  Which at this moment, I can't remember for the life of me where it was.  I look at way too many blogs each day to remember.  Gotta love summer.  Anyhoo - I saw the doily stamped on the cardstock of a layout and immediately thought of Hero Arts.  They had a few doily images in their winter catalog.  I hadn't really taken to any of them - but I immediately wanted this stamp.  Imagine my surprise when I found out it was an October Afternoon stamp not Hero Arts.  Upon finding this out, a light bulb went off in my empty little head.  Of course I love this doily - I love (and own) the paper with this image from October Afternoon - check it out here and here.  To be honest - I love the entire Thrift Shop line from October Afternoon.  I am often taken by the products from this company.  I love this stamp set.  Love the doily (to itty bitty pieces).  Love the typewriter.  Love the music and the words that go with it.  Love it so much.  So that's it - a new product to love.  I'm so happy.  To be honest - I thought I had lost my mojo when it came to product posts - but I didn't.  I just needed the perfect little thing to get me motivated.  On another note - I think this shows my changing perspective and style when it comes to papercrafting.  This stamp is in the same grain as the Prima papers I raved about much earlier in the year.  Love how things are evolving for me.

In other news - I wanted to share the mixed-media piece I was trying to make for the new Etsy Inspired Challenge blog.  I was inspired by this necklace at White Birch Designs.  If you look really close at the canvas - you might see a little of the pattern from the necklace in the petals.  I stamped 32 petals from this stamp set from Technique Tuesday in the hopes of recreating the pattern.  It didn't go how I planned.  Not one bit.  But - I had fun.  I had fun making the background.  I had fun stamping the images.  And - I'm going to have fun covering it all up.  It's a lesson and a breakthrough of sorts.  The lesson - I'm finally starting to enjoy the process without kicking my tail about the outcome.  It's a mess - but it's going somewhere new.  The idea of that gives me hope.  The breakthrough - I was having FUN.  So many times when I'm crafting I focus on the end result without appreciating the process.  Because when it comes down to it - I do this for the process just as much as the end result, if not more.  So even though this is a failure of sorts - I'm happy with it.  I loved doing it.  I can't wait to see the next evolution and that's really the point, right?  So that's it for now.  I hope you're having a nice Monday.  Until then...

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Happy Father's Day!

What Makes a Dad

God took the strength of a mountain,
The majesty of a tree,
The warmth of a summer sun,
The calm of a quiet sea,
The generous soul of nature,
The comforting arm of night,
The wisdom of the ages,
The power of the eagle's flight,
The joy of a morning in spring,
The faith of a mustard seed,
The patience of eternity,
The depth of a family need,
Then God combined these qualities,
When there was nothing more to add,
He knew His masterpiece was complete,
And so,

He called it ... Dad

~~Author Unknown.~~

Happy Father's Day Poppi!  I love you!

The Last Few Days

Good morning.  Still no crafty goodness to report.  I'm planning on working on something today - not sure how it's going to work but I'm hopeful.  More on that later - I hope.  So instead of perseverating on my lack of creative productivity, I thought I'd give a recap of what's being going on at Chez Lou in the last few days.

I've been watching this (not a picture of my house but wouldn't it be cool if it was?).

I rented this.  BTW: I had no expectations for this movie.  No, I had incredibly low expectations for this movie.  My take on it - too many people, too many story lines, no story or character development except Ashton and Jennifer Garner's characters.  It becomes a little hard to care when you don't know anything about anyone.  My personal faves were Julia Roberts and Bradley Cooper.  I heard they are thinking of doing something similar with New Year's Eve.  I hope they don't put so many characters in it.  Otherwise, honestly, it just blows.

I also rented this.  Gotta love Josh Duhamel (how the heck do you say his last name?).  Kristen Bell was also good.  Again, I had low expectations and was pleasantly surprised.

Did a lot of this (sleeping if you can't guess).

Still reading this.  It's actually really good but easy to put down.  Not sure how those things go together.  Need to step it up if I'm going to be a reading machine and beat my number from last summer.

Addicted to this song and I'm not sure how or why.

Also addicted to this song - and I totally know why.  I love Idina and I love Lady Gaga.

And finally, I've spent a lot of time with this girl.  She's been sweet and on her game.  Here's hoping that lasts. :)

We're happy as clams around here.  Hope to get crafting today.  Hope everyone has a nice Sunday and Father's Day!  Until then...

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Work of Art

In the last couple days (lazy days), I came upon the new show on Bravo, "Work of Art."  Being very interested in all things arty and creative - I thought I'd be a sucker for this show.  Add my friend asking me if I watch it and giving her endorsement and I was in.  Until...I saw an ad and one of the judges was saying "that's not art."  I think that's pretty close to what he said and I was immediately pissed.  I guess from my foray into crafting I've started to finally get the message.  You are allowed to define your art.  You are allowed to define whether you are a crafter or an artist.  I wouldn't call myself an artist - but that's just me.  There are many people in the crafting world that are artists - hands down...from scrapbookers to knitters to sculptors.  No one has the effing right to tell someone what they do is not art.  Now I think it's fine to say I don't like this art or this looks like trash (not to the artist though obviously), but it's not okay to define art for anyone else.  There are plenty of things I see and think is absolute junk but is considered art.  My opinion doesn't change what it is.  So - I'm on the fence about this show.  I'm intrigued because I do like seeing other people's process and concepts of creativity/art.  I just don't want to get bogged down in the judge's message.  What Ali E. says is absolutely true - it is okay.  Whether you define yourself as an artist/crafter/knitter/scrapbooker/etc., it is all okay.  Be who you are.  I just wanted to be able to say that - it's important to remember.  It's a daily struggle for me - ask E or M - but I'm working on it.  So there Mr. Judge!  I hope everyone has a nice Saturday.  Until then...

BTW: Morguefile does it again!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

So Tired

I really wish I had a card to share today - but I'm so flippin' tired from my medicine I take every six weeks.  So no card for today, just a cute picture from and a link to something close to my heart.  I'm always interested in finding ways to make my crafts help others.  There is a cool article in Cardmaker each month on helping others through cards.  Recently I found another site where you can use this hobby to help others called Cards for a Cause.  It's on the Splitcoast website here.  For the most part - I just look and think it would be cool to participate.  But no more!  I'm going to participate in this month's cause at Splitcoast Stampers.  Can't wait to post the cards here before I send.  On my agenda today...sleep and eat - that's it!  I hope everyone has a nice Thursday.  Until then...

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Do A Little Dance

I love this song.  You a little dance, make a little love, get down tonight.  It reminds me of my days at USC and hearing the marching band play that little diddy while the boys tried to smash their opponents.  It makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside.  So - when I saw this dancing cupcake in the My Zoetrope store on Etsy - I was immediately inspired.  I decided to make a card as close to the original as possible for the Etsy Inspired Challenge blog (love this site - full of inspirational goodness).    The final card looked like this:

It's a mini card (3X3).  Truth be know - I'm not a fan of it.  I had to freehand the arms, legs, eyes, mouth and sentiment.  It's not perfect - but I didn't really expect it to be.  It's my first time out and I just can't expect to hit it out of the park.  The important thing is...I did something new.  I stretched myself just a little.  I have a little image I love - because really who can resist a dancing cupcake?  It brings a smile to my face and that's all I really needed - a chance to flex those creative muscles in the cutest way imaginable.  Not to mention - it totally makes me think of Chandler from "Friends."  Does anyone remember that line - "They're gonna do a little dance, make a little love, pretty much get down tonight?"  Love it!  So there you go - a return to challenge after a very long hiatus.  Can't wait to do more.  Hope this Wednesday finds you well.  I'm going to get out of the house - take a trip to my second home and relax.  Until then...

BTW: Sorry for the poor picture quality.  My flash kept on skewing the image.  I guess it was the colored pencils.  Not nearly as dark in person.  :)

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Oops or How I Fixed a Mistake

I'm very happy to announce that I'm once again in the Inspiration Phase of creativity.  It's been such a long time since I've been here and I'm absolutely ecstatic that I'm back.  I finished my dad's cards yesterday - no today.  I'm very happy with what they look like.  Truth be known - I'm happy in general.  It feels good to be flexing my creative muscles again.  I'm at that point where I'm excited to see what will happen next.  I love it!

So I thought I'd share something with you a breakthrough of sorts. I made a mistake on one of my cards.  I stamped directly on the card instead of on a separate piece of paper to allow for error. I didn't like the result and I thought there was nothing I could do.  I loved the dancing girl image and I was pretty happy with the card until I stamped "Days Like These Make Me."  It was too crowded to the edge and I didn't like it at all.  In fact, it was all I could not stop thinking about. 

So...I got up this morning with a fresh eye and came up with this solution.  I totally ditched the saying and went for something a little simpler.  I thought the red paper would be a good substitute and would help things come together.  In the end - it's a little overworked but it's better than it's original (IMHO).   Had a few kinks with adding the red cardstock but I think it was worth it.

So there you are - progress.  A few months ago - this card would have went in the trash.  And - I totally would have lost a great image.  I need to remember to be a little easier on myself.  Not everything is going to be perfect.  So...I'm going to leave you with a slide show of the cards I completed for my dad.  I tried to make two color stories (red, orange, yellow, blue) and (blue, green, teal).  Turns out one story is far heavier than the other.  Can you guess which one?  Despite some false starts and mistakes - I'm happy with what I've got here.  I hope everyone has a nice Tuesday.  Until then...

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Ebb and Flow

In the last three years of my crafty life, I have learned one thing - my drive/willingness to be creative ebbs and flows.  Sometimes I don't want anything to do with crafting - don't want to look at the stuff in my house - want it out of my head.  Other times - I'm full of ideas and a creating machine.  And then - there are the times I want more - I want to stretch myself and do new things.  I know this much is true - there is no constant when it comes to creativity (at least not mine).  This year I realized one more thing - I'm interested in crafting at the end of the school year.  I'm too stressed.  My head is full of too many things to even think beyond the day to day.  Last year it took almost two months for my head to clear - but this year it only took one little convention.

I went to a rubber stamp convention nearby recently - and I was completely floored.  I had planned on getting quite a few things from my local Archivers at the Hero Arts trunk show.  I even took stock of how I had used my stamp purchases last year at the same convention and the results were not good.  I assumed the Hero Arts images I would use the most.  I kept to the plan for about 10 minutes of shopping and then realized there was no way I was going to Archivers.  I've already used a few of my images and wanted to share them with you today.  I am so happy to find stamps that have people that look like me - can't even say how much it means to me.  So without further ado....

The first three images are from RubberNecker Stamps - which has great images at a very low price point.  I got six stamps for $27 from this company.  The stamps were pre-cut, unmounted with cling foam.  Doesn't get much better than that.  The last stamps were from Too Much Fun Rubberstamps.  I love the oven and the sentiment.  It's too great and fits my personality so well.  These are just a first go with my goodies.  I will have much more to play with in the upcoming weeks.  Finally excited to create.  Can't tell you how much I love that.

I'm going to leave you with a picture of a new project I plan to start in the coming weeks.  It represents an opportunity to stretch and grow which I just love. 

And with that - there isn't much more to report.  I hope everyone has had a nice weekend!  Until then...

Saturday, June 12, 2010

The Voice Inside My Head

Last night I was with friends for dinner and I started thinking a lot about the voice inside my head.  Some people call it their inner critic - but I'm not nearly that high brow.  I call her the voice inside my head.  I use to have a name for her and thought she was being protective but now I know different.  I'm the kind of person who thinks way too much.  I'm naturally introverted and most of my recharging happens when I'm alone and she pops out.  And she's good at keeping me safe - but her way of doing that is to keep me out of the game - to stay with what's familiar and comfortable.  She can be a great help.  But let's' be frank - sometimes she's downright ugly.  I can hardly do anything that I enjoy without her harping about whether I'm doing it right and that I can't be wrong.  She thinks mistakes are for chumps.  She doesn't like hanging out there to see something new.  She's all about protection at any cost.  Something happened recently and I realized it's time to start doing the hard, uncomfortable things.  I'm never going to get where I want if I don't take some risks.  So though I'm thankful she has been keeping me safe - I need her to be a little more adventurous.  And I know that she's me - but it feels more empowering to separate her from the bulk of who I am.  It makes it easier to figure out a new plan.  After all - life isn't a dress rehearsal.  Until then...

BTW: All this talk of the voice inside my head makes me think of the song by Sister Hazel, "The World Inside My Head."  I love it.  Thought I'd give the opportunity to listen to it here.

Friday, June 11, 2010


Three posts in one day!  I can hardly believe it myself!  I just wanted to leave you with a picture of the card I made today.  It's a little busy - but I like it overall.  Love this set from Hero Arts - just perfect for birthdays.  It felt good to make a card and have an actual event in mind.  Gotta love crafting for a specific purpose.  I hope everyone has a rockin' Friday night.  Until then...

Thankful for Friends

Everyone needs one - one friend that listens and cares no matter what.  One friend that's willing to put up with your craziness and the accompanying random bullsh*! that comes out of your mouth.  One friend that mourns with you in your times of sadness and rejoices with you in times of happiness.  One friend that will travel miles to be with you.  One friend that cheers you on when you are insecure.  One friend that makes you laugh.  One friend that introduces you to new things. One friend that believes in you when you don't have the strength to believe in yourself.  I'm so glad to have found friends like that in my lifetime - to have rarely been without one.  I'm glad now when things have gotten blurry.  I hope to always be this kind of friend to at least one person.  It makes such a huge difference.  It's made such a huge difference for me.  And right now, in this moment, I wish it for everyone.  Until then...

An Ode to Laundry

I want to say something about laundry in an apartment - it blows!  Once again I am stuck going to the local laundromat where it is okay to SMOKE - which gets a big WTF!  I can't tell you what a pet peeve it is to go to the place clean clothes live and have to deal with the smoke, and your clothes smelling like smoke, and the fact that you can't breathe because this place has reactivated your dormant asthma.  I grow tired of making this trek and don't wash as much clothes as I should cuz who the hell wants to sit in the smoky laundromat all day.  I am in search of an apartment with a washer/dryer hook-up.  I'm not sure how I'll afford a washer and dryer, but at this point I might consider selling myself to get one or maybe even Tonks!  I've been putting this off all week but now it's time to do it.  It's really been too long.  I think I'll bring The Happy Book to lift me up from the heinousness known as the laundromat.  Until then...

BTW: Another great picture from

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

I'm Not Kidding!

I bought this book earlier this week at my local Barnes and Noble, otherwise known as my second home or why I eat Ramen Noodles half the month.  It's in the same vein as Wreck this Journal, This is Not a Book, and Listography: Journal Your Life in Lists.  In my humble opinion, it's a little piece of sunshine.  Anyone who knows me understands how crazy it is that I would buy a book like this - not that I would buy a book because that's pretty predictable.  I'm not one of those people that's bubbling over with happiness.  I wouldn't even say I'm an optimist.  I would say I generally stay around the middle of the road.  I'm optimistic for others but generally not so much for myself.  It's a terrible habit really.  So - enter The Happy Book.  It's pretty amazing with prompts for writing, creative projects, photo scavenger hunts, etc.  Here's the product description from Amazon:

The Happy Book shows how to practice and celebrate happiness so you can find it when you really need it. Packed with creative prompts, wacky ideas, and hip activities, this is the ultimate pick-me-up. Packaged to encourage doodling and drawing, The Happy Book has space to scribble thoughts, make lists, fill in the blanks, and paste pictures. This book is about creating a record of what makes you glad, whether that means '80s hair bands or hot chocolate with churros.

Fully interactive and customizable for each reader, The Happy Book allows today's social networking fans an offline outlet for play. From photo scavenger hunts to cake baking to finger painting, everyone's happy formula is unique. The Happy Book enables readers to celebrate and share whatever gives them wall-to-wall joy. 

Ive already started to do some entries.  I'm started the words that make you happy prompt (Zimbabwe is on the top of the list - I just love the ways it rolls off the tongue), favorite color (stamped my branch out image from Stampin' Up), my favorite people, and books that make me happy.  I had a hard time with the books prompts.  I didn't know if I needed to choose happy books or books that I love and just thinking about reading them brings me happiness.  I went with the second idea.  I figured it's my friggin' book and frankly anyone who wants to critique it can suck it.  Not so happy thought but anything to quiet the loser in my head.  So there it is - my new favorite find.  I write in it at my crafting station so it just feels so good.  I look forward to carrying it around with me and doing some of the action prompts.  I also think it's sort of like a time capsule.  It shows what makes me happy right now.  I think it'll be really interesting to go back and look at later on in my life.  Can't wait!  I really hope this day finds you happy.  Until then...

Sunday, June 6, 2010


Hummingbirds are my bliss.  Growing up we visited Mt. Shasta, California for swimming meets and we always hung out with these really great people.  They had a beautiful house in a wooded area.  As time went on, I became good friends with their daughter and spent extra time in the "city" after the Mt. Shasta swim meet - always one of the hottest places we traveled to - hands down.  They had a red hummingbird feeder similar to the one pictured here.  I loved it.  I love these little birds with their wings flapping at what seemed like light speed to my younger self.  They were fabulous.  Now that I'm "all grown up" - I still love hummingbirds.  My breath catches each time I see one.  They remind me of easier times when my whole life was in front of me.  Before the pressure of adulthood and conformity took over - when I was still in touch with my creative self.  This picture captures that feeling perfectly - the feeling of bliss, joy, magic and possibility.

It might come as a surprise - but this picture started out looking like this:

It's a beautiful picture as is - but still I wanted to try to see if I could give it vintage effects and a little texture using Photoshop Elements.  I think I did a pretty good job for my first time out.  I found the picture at Morgue File - a fabulous site I heard about on Paperclipping Roundtable.  They have copyright free images and they're amazing.  It works out well for a girl like me that doesn't take many pictures.  I used a texture from flickr.  I really wish I knew the user name for the person because it's amazing!  So there you are - my first crack at vintage.  I had big plans to post about something else entirely - but...[insert cute quote about plans here - for the love of God I can't think of one]. ;),  I hope everyone is having a nice Sunday.  I spent part of mine at my second home - Barnes & Noble which was heavenly.  More on that another day.  Until then...

Saturday, June 5, 2010

The Day I Operated on 2.5 Hours of Sleep

I'm happy to report the school year is over and I have more than two months of rest and relaxation in front of me.  I thought I would be crafting like a fiend by now.  But I forgot that I'm pretty spent at this time of the year and the last thing I want to do is think too much.  And trust me...I think way too much when I'm crafting.  The inner critic in my head is a chatty thing.  So instead of crafting, I've been reading like nobody's business.  I stayed up until 4:00 in the morning trying to read this book.  I was 15 pages away from the end when I threw in the towel.  Absolutely nothing was registering in my brain.  So - I fell asleep until 6:30 (WTF?) and promptly had a disaster in my bathroom (overflowing toilet to the likes of nothing I've ever seen before - didn't know it could put out so much frickin' water!).  So after that - I needed some time to unwind or I was going to need to crawl out of my own skin.  I finally finished the last 15 pages about 15 minutes ago and can say with absolutely certainty - I love this book.  Next on the reading pile is this:

I'm really looking forward to jumping into this book.  I'll probably start it sometime today with the hope of finishing it in the next few days.  I want to be a reading machine this summer.  I can't seem to get much reading done during the school year - so I have very high hopes for Summer 2010!  I think I read 10 or 11 books last year and I'm hoping to beat that number.  Let's hope I can do it.  I'm also reading this and this at the same time if anyone is interested.  I find that I can't read 2 fiction books at a time but I can mix in other genres.  Funny how that works.

On the crafting front I don't have anything to report.  I need to make 15 cards for my dad in the next week.  I'm giving myself a deadline.  I also need to print out pictures and finish my layout for the next installment in the circle journal - which I'm realizing might not be for me.  I do not like crafting on demand.  I need to get pictures printed from Iowa (not many but a few I would like to scrap).  And I need to wrap my head around making an art piece based on some pretty strong feelings I had recently.  Hoping the fog will lift soon so I can be a crafting and reading machine.  Hope everyone has a nice Saturday.  Until then...
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Site Info