Sunday, March 30, 2008

Blogging, Vintage Swap & Therapy Art

It's been a busy week. How about you? I have this whole list of things I want to talk about on my blog; thoughts from the week, things to share, pictures to post. Just haven't done it. My list reminds me of when DH was in the Marine Corps overseas at war. I would keep a list of things by the phone, things I needed to talk to him about, important or trivial, I didn't want to forget anything because we only had sporadic 20 minute conversations. That's the way I feel about a blog. It's a place to share stuff, visit with people, record what's going on; important or trivial. I find myself inserting the words 'Oh, I have to blog this' after all the crazy things that happen in my life. 2 years ago, I didn't even know what a blog was! Do you ever go back in your own blogs and read? I do. I was reading from over a year ago and I thought 'boy, I was funnier/crazier/rollmyeyes more embarrassing then!' It's just fun to read about what was going on in my life back then. Kind of like a diary. Only with pictures... and people I don't know reading it. lol

I'll only share one thing off my list for now. More tomorrow. I joined a swap 'ArtsyMama's Vintage Party Swap' a while back and have been working on the package for my partner Paula. I can't show you what I have just yet since I haven't sent it to her. As soon as she has it, I'll show. However, I DID receive my package from her! I am so excited about everything in the box! The theme she sent me was 'Paris In The Spring'. Perfect idea!

One of the most exciting things about the whole box was this note and CD (apparently its from a movie I have yet to see). The note indicated that I should pop the CD in and listen to it while opening the package. This made the opening seem like an event! Wonderful idea.

I've always wanted one of those triangle vintage type banners you see people have for their mantles/walls/rooms but have just never made one (like this, this and this). She provided the kit for me to make one myself! It even has 4 different types of streamers to help decorate the banner. I can't wait to get started on it!

I'm in love with birds, nests, eggs, anything having to do with those. This is an adorable porcelain bird musicbox playing a song I can't quite identify, yet. But its a beautiful tune.

I love the Eiffel Tower box. It looks like a vintage postcard on the front, with gold leafing around the edges. It's going straight in my Paris bathroom to hold something of consequence. The lovely handmade wired button flowers and French Lavender candle inside were just the right touch.

The little pocket thing seen on the left is metal. How cool is that? It came filled with tissue paper and these flowers and seed packet. I am looking forward to planting the seeds in the yard.

Some of my favorite items from the package are in this picture. It included metal grommets, brochures from a Paris trip and elongated postcards of Paris pictures. They're beautiful! I want to frame a few for my bathroom.

There's nothing I love more than all things vintage so the inclusion of some old flowers, labels, garden fence and old music really floated my boat. Love the colors on these things.

One of the main things that made the package so special was that everything was wrapped in bright, tissue paper as well as the french toile type paper too. I collect tissue paper to use in my art so these was like a goldmine to me. I have none of these pieces yet.

I think my favorite thing in the whole package was the picture you see at the top of the post. The pretty nest with eggs on some gorgeous twigs/berry branches. I've set it on my shelf to remind me that spring really IS on the way, despite my thinking the contrary.

Thanks so much to my generous partner Paula. I hope my package meets with what you're wanting in a 'Spring Fling' topic. We shall soon see...

P.S. I just noticed that this next week's Creative Therapy Challenge (the one I mentioned here) is up already for tomorrow and you can find my new canvas there this time! GO here to see the challenge and play along. They're giving away a fabulous book! Here's closeups of my canvas. (I think I was a bit inspired with this canvas by some Kawaii sticker tape I received this week! lol) It's already listed in my ETSY shop. Both my shops have lots of new items.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Yes and No...

Yes. I'm still alive.
No. I haven't moved/died/fallen and can't get up.
Yes. I'm busy.
No. Unfortunately I'm not on Spring break, vacation or any other wonderful sounding change from normal life.

DH asked me if I'd quit blogging (he said this from his easy chair as he can now apparently sit and surf the web in front of the WII. Yes, I said WII. Its a download thing you can do. ) Quit blogging? GASP? Perish the thought!

No. I haven't quit blogging.
Yes. I've been creating a bit. (see below)
No. I'm not done with my Emma book.
Yes. I've been listing on Etsy. And Etsy. (also see pic above)
Yes. Homeschool is keeping me on my toes.
No. I can not wait until summer is here.
Yes. There are much more interesting blogs than mine; here, here and here too!

How's life with you?

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Jane Austen Virtual Book Club

I thought for all those who are participating in our little virtual book club, I'd make a post and then update it frequently with our questions to discuss about the book. You can respond by comment on THIS post and I'll add your answers to the questions. That way we have one place to keep up with the book club.

My friend Kersten says that PBS is showing Emma this weekend (I think Sunday) on TV so you might want to tape it. I'm going to try to not watch it until after I've finished the book. I hate when movies prejudice me before I read the book.

Does anyone remember my problem with The Count Of Monte Cristo that I read for the book club I used to be in? The book was 1462 pages, fabulous book and the movie was only 2 hours long and totally changed the ending! Enough said.

Anyway, feel free to post questions, thoughts, etc... here.
If anyone else is reading this and wants to participate, go pick up Emma and read with us!
You can favorite this post or subscribe to it somehow (I think at the bottom?) That way you can see when others have commented about the book/questions.

QUESTIONS TO PONDER (answer any or all that you like):

(About Harriet)
1. Does Emma act as a good friend to Harriet Smith? Why is Emma so determined to "improve" Harriet Smith? Are Emma's concerns for Harriet's education and refinement born of an honest desire to help, or is it something less altruistic? Are Mr. Knightley's criticisms of Emma's interference with Mr. Martin's marriage proposal justified? Does Harriet ultimately benefit from Emma's friendship or her attempts to help her?

Spring & New Project

Can you feel spring where you live? I can't but I know its coming. Even though its bitter cold out, when I take the pup outside I see buds forming on the bushes. I see new ivy pushing its way up through the cold ground. I see an ice cream truck. .. WHAT?! Yep, that's just what rolled by the house. I was like, no seriously! What? The kids were screaming for ice cream (I said 'chill and eat the cake I just made you!' ) and I couldn't figure out why he would be out. It's like 25 degrees! But wait, it's spring break for the public school kids. So see? Signs of spring no matter how wacky, are here.

I think I'm getting into spring cleaning mood. We swept the kitchen floor today. I call that some spring cleaning. Just kidding. I pulled out several things I made a while ago and went ahead and listed them on Etsy. I figure, if they're just going to sit around and don't go with my decor, why have them? I can't bear to throw anything way (sorry, DH) so off to etsy they go.

I talked about my new project a couple posts back and now I can share. I opened a new Etsy store. I know, I've been all about 'Etsy' lately but I'm trying to get rid of stuff in the art room plus need to pay for children's camps and mission trips this summer so I've stepped up my listing. Anyway, I finally got around to building some Collage Sheets of Vintage Images I own and have listed them in a new store. I will continue to put sheets and other supplies in this new store. If you're needing something, let me know, I just might have it. This week I'm adding vintage music sheets, wallpaper, and I think I have trims ready to list. Oh, and a couple more sheets. Having an opening special, 3 collage sheets for $10.

Back to my spring thought, I'm so ready for it to come (minus the tornadoes of course.) Here's some pics from last year's springtime. (The last 2 pics are 'unfortunately' from mom's trip to Staniel Cay, not mine.)

Monday, March 17, 2008

Happy St. Pats!

My children are balking at a day of school. It's like pulling teeth to get anyone to even remotely resemble an awake person today. So we've declared today a holiday. They keep saying 'but mom, its St. Patrick's Day... and we're sleepy!' Normally they don't get away with that at all, but frankly, I'm tired too. It was a busy weekend. It's super rainy/stormy out, so here we sit. Doing just about nothing. All the kids in the area have Spring Break this week anyway, I can be lenient one day, can't I? Plus, they don't know it yet, but they'll be reading, playing boardgames together whether they like it or not and we'll be doing some cleaning. In the meantime, I'm wrapping up things that need to hit the PO today/tomorrow and listing stuff on Etsy. Hoping to work on an art project soon too. Have to get my listing and cleaning done first before I'll reward myself that privilege of an artsy day. Okay, I did make this ATC, other than that, no more art for now...

What are you doing today? Any St. Patrick's Day celebrations? Hope your day is green!

Sunday, March 16, 2008

WINNER, KCEtsy Team, Book Club & Creative Therapy

(DD, at birthday party today. It's so hard to wait for cake and ice cream time.)

Hello all. Yes, I've been quiet this week. Don't know why. Well, maybe not quiet, but not a lot of art. Just too busy with kids' homeschool, headaches (you know how those go) and other things. Looking forward to a busy art week. This will be a hodgepodge post so if you hate those don't look. *wink*

WINNER: Let's just get to this right away, k? Of course I'm a day late and a dollar short as the saying goes. I always have trouble getting on the computer on the weekends. So today I'm announcing the winner. It's funny, I went over to the winner's blog to tell her, and her March 11th post talked about me! Isn't that so fortuitous?! WENDY is our winner. Congrats Wendy. Send me your mailing address and I'll get the pin out to you this week, when I go to the post office with the other 500+ who knows how many things I need to mail. I'm so behind.

KCEtsy Team: On Etsy, you can join groups pertaining to your interests. I joined a local group that is very active and went to my first meeting in person on Friday night. The ladies were super nice, all extremely talented, and so personable. They enveloped DD and I into the group without a misstep. You should see all their work. So inspiring. Go see the website, buy from them. It's always good to buy handmade.

(Pics of handmade business cards I took to the meeting. I love using up scraps!)

Avant Garde JA Book Club: We've added 4 more people to our little group so far. My mom, both SILs and Fran posted that she wanted to play too! It's going to be fun! I will be posting a subsequent post with detailed information for our new group. Stay tuned. We would love anyone who still wants to participate, to join us. We're starting with Emma and you're not late. I'm on page 5. There is no cut off date.

Creative Therapy: I'm excited and a little scared about this new endeavor. As most who know me know, I don't work in traditional ways and I don't like to be told what to do! lol However, I'm extremely honored to be invited to join the new Creative Therapy Team where each week several from the team with do art pertaining to a question/idea. Kind of a mini therapy session for free! I'm not a scrapbooker anymore and I have never wrapped my brain around doing art journals. I always feel like I would have to have something 'important' to say in a journal. With these weekly challenges, we're opening up the brain, and dumping all thoughts/feelings and/or emotions out for the topic. It can be very theraputic. But if you're like me, and don't scrapbook or journal, you can interpret the topic any ole' way you feel like it. Draw, paint, sew, collage, stamp, assemble, whatever. Really, whatever embodies what the weekly topic means to you. I encourage you to go to the new website, try a weekly theme, see how it makes you feel. You just might discover its groundbreaking capabilities for your life... Go. Look. Be Creative.

(Highlights from this week: #1-worm found/sign of spring, #2-Clemie's new coat, the rest: pics of nephew's birthday party & fam get together)

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Jane Austen Book Club

Well, it looks like we're getting a little virtual group going here.
Trisha ??
Connie (my mom)
Kelly (my SIL aka: blog stalker)
Jen (my SIL)

Anyone else feel the need to read? We've started with
Emma. (Okay, I won't say we, I need to run to the library today to get my copy. It's waiting there.) Maybe we'll convene soon and answer questions about the book. Like a real club. Wouldn't that be so avant garde of us?! (bear with me, I'm trying out new words instead of 'cool' awesome' and 'wonderful'. Tired of those. lol)

My daughter just informed me I suck at book clubs (thank you dd.) She's right. I quit the last one. Didn't feel like reading anymore. But maybe I'm moving into my season of it again... We'll see.

Anyway, onward and upward! Now back to our regularly scheduled homeschool and I'm sewing beads on
another pin. Normal day in the life of me...

P.S. I'll be drawing a winner for the pin on Saturday. Last chance to win! Just comment here to enter. Tell me what you're working on artistically or tell me something you like in my Etsy shop.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Fish Burial, WIPS, Houses, China

(shameless posted pic of our puppy)

Raise your hand if you have girls. (DH raise your hand, I'm talking about yours.) Do your girls do things like this? One is 8, another is 15.

They took a break from homeschool for a bit today to go play outside with pup pup in the beautiful weather. They ended up digging up our fish that died after the holidays. 'Just to see if he had turned to bones yet' was their excuse. They made me come look. He's drying like beef jerky. Anyway, fish need proper burial I guess. Mr. Chanel now has one. They raised the leaf flag over his poor dehydrated body and DD played the wedding march dum-dum-dum-dummmm... (which she thought should be played at a funeral) on the bat with a spoon. An 8 year old in Teletubbie pants out in the yard at a fish funeral. Ahhh, those crazy homeschoolers! (doesn't this bring to mind the famous Rudy and the dead fish episode on The Cosby Show?)

I've been working on a project I'm not ready to share just yet. But its taking up much of my creating time and if my scanner will work again I'll be a happy camper. I have pulled out several Works-in-Progress that weren't getting much progress. Mostly canvases I haven't finished. Hoping to give them some love this weekend.

On Altered Gypsy we are doing a monthly project out of Somerset Studio Magazine. January was crowns (sorry, not posted yet, its being published), February was Paper Scrap girls. I think March we're going with 3D houses or houses of some kind. I was playing around with an old bottle of liquid nails yesterday to see if it was still potent and it is. So I think I have the beginnings of some fun houses! I'll post when they're finished.

It's a gorgeous spring day today. Better enjoy it while we can. Saturday its supposed to snow. Ugh. In the meantime, little dd is laying out in the yard on a blanket, drawing pics of China things (ie; panda, Great Wall) into her little booklet she wanted to make for social studies 'to remember it for all time' she said. Her hair is pinned up with black chopsticks that her sister put there (didn't want her pic taken). She's embracing the culture already.