Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Goodbye to 2013

Saying goodbye to 2013, what all did I do?
First thing I did in 2013 was walk a 5K and finished last
Walked several more 5K’s and didn’t finish last
Treadmill did not become my best friend!
Got an iPhone and iPad – staying connected
Enjoying Facebook
Travelled to Chicago
Got my picture taken at the “bean”
Stood on a glass floor 113 stories high
Went to the Mexican American art museum in Chicago
Visited Washington DC 
Lincoln memorial and stood at the same spot Martin Luther King stood.
Was moved by the 9/11 memorial at the Pentagon
Traveled to Boston
Sightseeing all of Boston.  The Freedom Trail was awesome.
Went to Salem and learned about witches.
Gathered rocks along the beach in Marshfield
Had fun at the Buckley family reunion and took a photo of everyone who attended.
Fenway and Red Sox game….world series champs, again.
Attended  a wedding in  Lubbock with the Arens family
Went to Abilene Texas and walked  wello’s lot on Bois D’arc with my Alvarez family
Sold my jewelry on every  trip!
Traveled to Nebraska & Colorado, twice.
Found the neatest flag backdrop in McCook, Nebraska
Watched and enjoyed a lot of football
Learned how to paint a house.
Went my second Kansas football game
Enjoyed my visit to the Little Monastery of the Lamb in Kansas City, KS
Didn’t see some friends as much as I wanted
Checked out Guru Honey shop in Lincoln, Nebraska…very cool stuff
Swam in my pool daily…but never jumped in
Met new creative friends
Used my camera a lot and I mean a lot I probably have a photo for each of these things
Learned to knit!
Soldered, sewed, painted
Bedtime is way after midnight
Killed most of my plants over the summer! Only two survived.
Didn’t dance enough
Continued to get great advice from Cathy
My Wednesdays with my brother turned into any weekday with my brother
Watched cooking shows and learned me some new skills
Still have a long to-do list
Love my time with family and friends this year
Feeling great and ready to swag my way into 2014

Christmas cookie decorating

I continued with our new tradition of decorating cookies with the twins Olivia & Addison, their brother Owen, sister Kailey and cousin Eli.   I put the frosting in squeeze tubes and boy this was a great idea.  All the kids shared so nicely and did a great job on their cookies! 

Olivia having a blast.
Eli did a great job!  He didn't mind taste testing either.
Kailey using a butter knife to spread out her frosting.
Olivia had no trouble decorating all her cookies
Owen loved using the red frosting on his cookies.
Addison waiting  for the green frosting.  Mom's giving decorating tips.
I loved hanging out with my favorite twins!

Cookie exchange 2013

This year's cookie exchange was fun and we all got some great cookies.  The weather has been cool and wet so my sugar cookie dough wasn't gonna be easy to roll and cut into shapes.  I used a medium size ice cream scoop to make all the same size cookie balls and then flattened them with a  glass dipped in sugar.  Nice even size round cookies.  I mixed up some icing and piped on trees.  90 cookies total!

I found the cutest candle holders at Ikea and knew I had to use them.  The round cookies fit perfectly.  But using the candle holders seemed to boring so I added some embellishments.  

I include two candles with my cookies.  By the way, my sugar cookies tasted so yummie!  

Chalkboard inspired gift wrap!

I got this idea from Pinterest.  It was recommended to use black butcher paper, which I found at Hobby Lobby, but it had a shine to it, not really sure how much I like that.  I experimented with white chalk, white paint pens, white lead pencils and white oil pastel stick.  Each gave it's own finish.

black butcher paper with oil pastel stick

I found black drawing paper at Dick Blicks and really liked using the chalk pencils on it.  Probably my favorite.  I made some holiday sign artwork to frame using this application.

I used the black butcher paper with the oil pastel stick for my gift wrap.  It was fun and I will use it, again and again for gift wrap!  The gift "getters"  loved it.  

Merry + Happy 2014!

Merry + Happy 2014 was this year's season greeting on my card.  Years ago I helped with a photo project for my husband's family reunion.  I has a collection of slides that needed to be converted to .jpeg files.  I remembered seeing on very cool photo of a house in a very winter setting.  It was Grandpa John's farmhouse.  I printed it on a large 11"x13" format.  I stared at it for several days trying to figure out how I could use it in my card.  I started painting on it.  I used acrylic tube paint with a medium clear glade to allow the paint to stay wet longer.  It worked perfectly. 

I used my camera to take a photo of the painting so I could download it on my laptop.

I decided to make the photo look like one from the 60's with the white border and date

I printed our greeting and a little something about the original photo on the back of the card.  Cut, scored and folded about 100 cards.

 I added glitter to the green glitter to the tree, white glitter to the roof on the house and black glittler on the snowman's hat.  I printed on a canvas photo paper which gave a really nice finish.

I attached the photo to the card stock with double stick tape and some decorative tapes on two of the corners.  I loved the way they turned out!

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Christmas projects

Each year I like to make new holiday projects.  This year it's no different.  I got some ideas from Pinterest and some left over from last year that I wasn't able to get to.  This week is set aside for all these projects and decorating the house.  I also am brainstorming an idea for my xmas cards.  One idea I have is to use this old photo from Tom's Grandpa John's slide collection.  I printed it on a large photo sheet and plan to apply paints and embellishments.  Stay tuned....

Photo by Grandpa John

 Another idea I am considering, chalk board style for my card 

Chalk board paint on card stock using chalk pencil.
This feels the most authentic.

This is black butcher paper with white pastel stick

This is black drawing paper using a chalk pencil.
 I really like how this looks.
I think this is the perfect gift wrap, too.

I saw this sign on Pinterest.  I have a piece of wood and I have paint...

Photo on Pinterest
Here's what I did... not bad.  I have to still sand & age it.  

I have scrap paper left over from a jewelry project so I cut them into flags and going to make into banners.  I may add some words.

Nothing like rustic jingle bell wire garland!
 Love this stuff and it was so easy to make

I was taking a photo for our holiday photo challenge and had to photo my heart rock.

I heart Christmas!

Here's what my desk looks like!  I need to move this into the studio because I'm getting glitter everywhere!

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Street fair was a challenge today

First of all, too much Phoenix traffic (always) which didn't make it easy to get to Casa Grande... ugh, should of paid attention to time, then again, time runs in odd ways in my world.  In all ended up with setting up late, but the spot was nice and the artists I was next to were nice.  My table was ready, but I noticed not much foot traffic.  As the night went on, still not much foot traffic.  A cool breeze showed up, though. All us participants closed up an hour early because again, not much foot traffic.  Oh well, on to the next event or two.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Street fair in Casa Grande, AZ!

This is where I'll be.....

Downtown Street Scene "Winter Wonderland"
Tuesday, December 03, 2013, 05:30pm - 09:00pm
This is a great "downtown social" with a different theme every month.  Local artisans and musicians are featured as well as  a Classic Car Show. Florence Street will by closed off and all the shops and restaurants will be open with special promotions.  This event is held the first Tuesday of each month from 5:30-9:00 pm. The location is at "The Alley" which is off Florence Street between 2nd and 4th Streets.  For more information, contact Rina Rien at 520-836-8744.  All downtown shops and restaurants will be open  

I'll have holiday themed pendants, Christmas stockings, garlands, more pendants, necklaces and earrings. 

A photo challenge going on on Facebook!!

 My sister, Melinda and I decided it was time for a photo challenge so why not do a holiday theme challenge.  Today is the first day of the Holly Jolly Countdown to Christmas Photo Challenge!  Join us!  Go over to Facebook and search out our group. It's a fun way to see the holidays through the camera lens! 

Facebook - Photo-A-Day Challenge Group

My dogs have a Facebook and this is their Day 1!