Sunday, April 24, 2011

Happy Easter

I want you to have this card for Easter (at least virtually).  I hope you enjoy the Bugaboo image and the Creative Charms flower.

The Wonderkid and I are traveling this week.  These pictures may give you a hint about where we are.  If you have been reading, you know how much I love different oversize sculptures.  You can see some of my posts here and here.

Well, here are two we saw yesterday.

Do you like one better than the other?  Why?

Finally, at home we are almost over the spring.  It would be nice to have more flowers and cool weather but I'm not especially hopeful.  Here is a picture of a wonderful flower I saw recently.

Monday, April 18, 2011

How much does a computer matter?

10 Days ago my computer gave up the ghost.  I had been nursing it along for about 6 months so I knew its days were numbered but it was still painful when it left us.  I had the vast majority of my files saved onto my external drive (if you don't have one I sincerely recommend them).  So, I thought, this won't be a problem.  I'll need to migrate a few files and then we'll be cooking with gas once again.

10 Days later I'm starting feel whole again (not quite but I'll be there soon).  I was even in better shape than most people.  Moma and Dad both work with computers so Moma had an extra laptop for me to borrow until we worked out my issues.  I happily took her up on that so at least I wasn't trying to do emails on my cell phone.  I could also surf the web and all that.  The problem came with all the little things.  Example, I couldn't print.  I could have installed the drivers and all that but for a week it seemed a bit crazy.  Then there are ALL THOSE PASSWORDS.  Do you ever stop to think about the number of passwords you have saved on your computer? I have my computer save most of the basic passwords, all of those message boards I visit, or the online companies I use, or the classes I've been taking.  I'm not even getting into the pain of explaining to my bank's online program that this is indeed a safe computer and to stop asking me about my Dad's fifth cousin's middle name and the shoe size of my mother's maternal grandmother.  I appreciate their diligence but I don't always remember Granny's shoe size or Cousin Herbert's middle name.

I'm also trying to figure out where everything is on the new computer and how to run Windows 7 as opposed to my old OS.  And on and on and on.  So, that is why I'm not feeling quite whole yet.

I was thrown by quite a loop when this was as tough as possible.  I thought, I don't use my cricut nearly as much as I did back in the day so this won't be that tough.  (By the way, no cricut cutting for 10 days because I was not about to migrate my Design Studio twice in as many weeks.  I haven't gotten SCAL up and running yet because I want to cut with DS first).  However, I was forgetting that all of my digis are on my computer and if I can't print, no digis.

And don't even get me started on blogging.  I thought I was so smart, I had a couple of projects ready to be posted (a tip I learned from Shimelle) except, I hadn't put them in Blogger, they were sitting on my desktop (the caput one).  It doesn't really count if you don't do all the steps.

So, here I am, finally back, I think.  I'm sure I'll run into a few more things in the next couple of weeks as I try to do something.  I didn't take pictures of the two birthday cards I made on Saturday morning for the 4 year-old birthdays (It was one of THOSE mornings).  I used digis that I had printed and colored but then never put on cards.  I did a bit of coloring in the last couple of days and I now have enough images ready for about 30 cards (15 were purchased by the local florist to sell for Mother's Day).

Have you thought about the effect your computer has on your everyday life?  What about your crafting? Do you think it would be easy to do without your computer?  Have you ever tried to do a computer free week or weekend?  How did it go?

I want to share a few pictures with you.  I recently showed you giant corn, hand sculptures, how about some mill stones?

I recently flew to West Virginia to train some folks and we spent the weekend at the 4H camp at Jackson's Mill (Stonewall Jackson's childhood home).  I'll try to do a later post on some of the stuff I experienced around the history of the place.

They decorated the entire place with mill stones (the old stones used to grind corn and wheat into flour and cornmeal).

Many of the mill stones were in front of each building, almost like a mailbox or way to give directions to the building.

This one seemed lonely.

Some still had metal rims around the edges.  You could see a progression in the mill stone "technology".

They even used the mill stones in the foundation of the house.

So, what do you think of the mill stones?  Do you have any interesting art like this? Does this make you think of any specific places you have visited?  Which ones and why?

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Gingersnap Office Items Challenge

Hello Friends -

I could use some feedback here.  I am a huge fan of the vintage/grunge/shabby style of papercrafting but I'm not very confident about my execution.  To add to my nervousness, the creations over at Gingersnaps are incredible.  I think they are really amazing and over the top gorgeous.  So, I've been checking out the work they do but I have never joined in one of their challenges.  However, I had some ideas for their challenge with office items.  I've been thinking about these paperclips which look a bit like the old typewriter keys. 

From there I searched for a vintage picture of an office.  I really wanted my card to have women in it, as opposed to the offices with all men.  I'm thinking about sending the card to one of my dear friends and an office full of men really wouldn't have been the right thing.

I was having trouble with the pattern paper so I stamped the typewriter image from the Hero Arts stamps I won from Papercraafter's Corner

With the ribbon I was going for the look of an old typerwriter ribbon.  Here on the Home Front I received a thumbs down on it looking anything like a typewriter ribbon.  I used rayon seam binding and covered it in Black Soot Distress Ink.  I can tell you my fingers look like I was changing typewriter ribbons.  What do you think?  Does it look like typewriter ribbon or just black ribbon crunched up? 

What would make this card work better, considering the vintage style? 

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

A Funny Card for the Ladies of Humbug Hall

Hello Friends -

This week the Ladies of Humbug Hall (Bah! Humbug! Christmas Challenges) have asked for a Christmas card to make you giggle.  Now, they had a couple of real doozies so I was feeling a bit intimidated.  What card could I make that would have folks giggling?  With the traveling and all, I almost didn't do one but then, I remembered all the great digis from Bugaboo Stamps.  Well, I did a bit of mix and matching (I always was a fan of those Garanimals).  The sentiment is from one of the Stella images while the image of Fanny didn't have a sentiment.

Here is a close-up of the sentiment/tag.

and the image of Fanny.  She is pop dotted because I would have never gotten her to lie flat on top of that ribbon.  You can't exactly see it in this shot but I added Stickles to the bulbs and her earrings for a bit of sparkle.

I found this new (new to me) Christmas Card Challenge site which also had the theme of funny cards.

I wanted to leave you with some more artwork from our trip.  On our way home from Ohio we stopped in Berea, KY.  If you've never visited Berea, it is well worth a visit, especially if you are a fan of arts and crafts (which I'm guessing you are if you are still reading this blog).  Here is a bit of the history of Berea, and a little bit about the school.  Many people know of their strong Arts and Crafts programs but Berea College is a liberal arts school with many majors besides arts and crafts.

You have already seen my fascination with outdoor sculptures.  I'm especially intrigued by the sculptures where an entire town/city has a series of sculptured all with the same base but each decorated for the artist or the organization commissioning the artwork.

In Berea it is hands.  Here are a few of the ones we saw.
The Hand of the Creator
Mano a Mano with Wonderkid
Gone Fishing
These photos are courtesy of the Berea Tourism Office.
A Bird in the Hand
Power of Make Belief

We Make You Kindly
Do you have a favorite outdoor sculpture?  Anything like this in your city or area?  I'd love to know about it.

While we were gone every leaf in the neighborhood arrived.  I'll take some pictures tomorrow as it is quite a difference from my pictures just a week ago.

Sunday, April 3, 2011


Hello Friends -

I use the  term  nerdy with affection, love and maybe to recapture it just a little bit.

I love the way this card ended up.  The paper is from Jillibean Soup's Atomic Soup collection.  The digi is from Tiddly Inks and her name is Gertrude.  I printed the beaker and flask twice on another piece of the Atomic Soup collection then I pop dotted one on top of the other.

The sentiment is computer generated.  I must have printed that sentiment a dozen times.  I couldn't get it quite the way I wanted it and then, once I got it right I realized it should be brown instead of black.  In the end, the entire thing came together the way I envisioned it.

We survived the trek north but it was just as cold as I feared.  The Wonderkid has now returned to being trapped inside.  We have a tent set-up in the living room and he runs up and down the halls of my 92 year-old Granny's "retirement village".

I'll leave you with some unique and interesting pictures.

This is a piece of artwork around the corner from my family. I've driven by many times but this morning I decided to stop and share it with you.  I remember when this area was all corn fields.  Now, you couldn't find a corn field (besides this concrete one) to save your life.  Here is the Wonderkid to give you a little perspective of the size.

Yes, he is a little guy but those are some big corn ears.

No, I didn't want to show you the shamrock on the top of the water tower.  That isn't so incredible even for someone that loves St. Patrick's Day.
Yes, I know you've seen water towers before.  Who cares, right?  Well, have you ever wondered what you can do with the bottom of a water tower?  I know my mind goes in strange directions and these are some of the things I think about.  In this town they turned the bottom of the water tower into a ...

Fire Station. I was hoping they would have these doors open
but no such luck.  Take my word for it, the fire trucks are back there.  Here are the windows for the bunk rooms and other living areas.
Without actual trucks, the Wonderkid was not especially impressed but he thought this would be a good place to be a fireman (His current career choice).

Do you have water towers like this in your area?

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Supahhh Star

Hello Friends -

I have a quick post today.  I wanted to show you a birthday card I made for my niece.  She is 9 going on 16 and has beautiful caramel colored hair.  She is a SUPAH STAR!!!  This digi from Tiddly Inks is perfect for her.  In addition, it was Christy's (the artist that made the digi) birthday last week and her favorite colors are red and black.

What do you think of that Core'dinations glitter cardstock?  Isn't it amazing and oh so glittery?  I'm not big on the glitter normally but it seems to work so nicely with this image and all. The edge of the red cardstock was done with a Martha Stewart edge punch.

I must admit, I can't see red and black together without flashing back to my high school and college days.  Do you have any color combos that cause you to flash to a certain time or place?

I'll be back tomorrow with another quick post from the road.  Wish us luck as we trudge North.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Hello Friends -

I have a couple of quick posts for you this week.  The Wonderkid is on spring break and we are headed to ...
No, it isn't Disney, or even Florida, or even the beach.  The Wonderkid and I are going to beautiful sunny snowy Ohio.  When I traveled for work all the time I would complain about the fact that I was sent North (colder part of the country) in the winter and South (hotter part of the country) in the summer.  So, now that I control my travel a bit more what do I do, I go North when everyone else in the world is going South.

And, Ohio, dion't get me started.  If it wasn't the homeland I certainly wouldn't spend a serious amount of time in Columbus.  However, when Granny is 93 and still kick around with most of her marbles, you go where she is and don't complain.  It warms my heart for the Wonderkid to spend time with his Great-Grandmother and you want to see someone that thinks he is a WONDERKID!!! Watch out world, Granny will be telling you about her genius Great Grandson.

All of this is the long way of telling you I had to hurry to get my crafting in before we start the long trek north.  Did I mention I had to take my winter coat out of storage?  I put it away thinking I was done with winter, I forgot about this little excursion.

A couple of things about this card.  Number One, the image is from Bugaboo Stamps.  Isn't he a cutey?  Now, do you think people will get hung up on the fact that he is an Easter turtle?  Who ever said an Easter bunny makes any sense, anyway?  And for my friends North of the Boarder (meaning Canada not Tennessee) she has this little guy with a Canadian flag and Maple leaf on his shell.

Number two, what do you think of those buttons?

These are the ones I'm talking about.  Aren't they cute?  So, I've been eyeing a little gizmo from Epiphany Crafts.  It will allow you to make a button with any cardstock backing you choose.  I think I'll do a product review after I've played with it a bit more but so far, I'm having fun.  Here is a link to find them.  My Archivers was selling them when I went in this week.  They were also demoing them.  I had looked all over for a place to buy them and was still doing a price comparison when they were staring me in the face and I had my 40% off coupon.  How could I pass them up.

Finally, I cracked my stash of Creative Charms open, again.  The butterfly is one of the many ones I keep buying and then saving because they are just so cute.

Well, I just went to check on the link for this little gem and didn't notice they changed the day their challenge is due.  It normally goes through Saturday morning but this week it was only until Friday.  Oh well, thems the breaks.  You still get to see a fun green card.  (The challenge was monocromatic and three buttons).

I'm curious, how do you start your creations?  Do you begin with a sketch, challenge, picture, paper, color or do you have a final goal and work from there?