Monday, December 29, 2008

Well, I hope you all had a merry Christmas, or Hanukkah, or Kwanzaa, or Winter Solstice, or whatever wintry holiday you celebrate! I certainly hope it was happy! We had a nice Christmas this year. Kinda quiet, but not too quiet. Time to put it all away for next year! It starts to get to me by this point. It feels cluttery and claustrophobic! (sp?) I am ready for things to go back to normal as much as I enjoy seeing all my Christmas's things in the beginning of December. I vowed that I am going to start decorating before Thanksgiving next year. I have beautiful decorations that I just don't have time to put out anymore. I want to see them, but it is a 2 week process of decorating to get it all done. Not worth it if you start too late. Somebody leave me a comment next November and remind me to do that, okay!
I posted pictures of our beautiful tree, Sierra helping Jake open his presents, Nick's awesome peppermint bark (recipe below), and the aftermath! Ahhh, memories!

I am yearning to get back to teaching. It has been more than a month and I miss my students! I have done a few private lessons for my mom, but no real classes at the store. I am excited about my new classes coming up. They are so me. It can be hard to find your voice in classes and create a class that is teachable and yet represents something you want to share that is original. I am teaching 4 different classes this round. Two classes are about exploring detail, one is a piece of art/home decor, and one is about using 5 stamps in a variety of ways to create original cards. Fun stuff. I would like to take a can opener and peel back the tops of people's heads to let the inspiration in and the ideas out! Okay, okay. I know that was kinda graphic, but you got the point, right? I just want people to open themselves up to new things.

Play is essential to creativity. If you don't play with your supplies, you can't hear that little muse speak to you! I think it is important to expose yourself to lots of art too. I can look at an ad on tv and create something from that if I am inspired by it. It's not that I am special. I have just unlocked a door in my head that most people keep locked. Unlock your door! Let creativity and inspiration in!
Okay, enough ranting and raving at you, here is the recipe:
Nick's Peppermint Bark
1 pkg semisweet chocolate chips
1 pkg white chocolate chips
6-8 candy canes, crushed
Melt chocolate in microwave or over double boiler slowly and poor into a greased 9 x 12 pan. Immediately do the same with the white chocolate (careful not to scorch!).
Sprinkle with crushed candy canes before it cools. Cool in fridge for an hour or so. Once cool, use the tip of a steak knife to begin breaking into irregular chunks. Enjoy!
Have a good night!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Merry, merry, merry!

We are in the home stretch! I am done shopping, and the wrapping will be really easy this year. I think I might actually be ready for Christmas! Shhhh! Don't tell anyone yet tho! I might need the "shopping" excuse for another day or so! I had my meltdown last week and got that out of the way, so I think I am in really good shape! I am back in the spirit! (I had a few bad days there...)
I am looking forward to spending some time with my family and friends and taking lots of pictures! I have been lagging in that department the last few weeks! With deadlines looming and the holiday activities, things get a little crazy around here! What am I saying, they get crazy everywhere! I have to say, I get better and better at scaling down my commitments to what we really want to do. I still have an ambitious nature, hence the meltdown last week, but I'm better now!
The pictures above are from the last week. There are two cards I made, a couple of pics of Christmas coffee (the table setting and the hersheys kisses), and a couple more from the cookie exchange party. Those would be the people ones! Both parties were lots of fun! It has a been a busy week tho!
Time for me to go! I am fighting a cold and I need to get my rest!
Enjoy these next few days!

Saturday, December 13, 2008


I just finished two projects and shipped them off to The Stamp Art Shoppe to be displayed for January classes. That is a weight off my shoulders! It is so hard to get any personal stuff done when it is this time of year! The framed Paper Heart Quilt is one class and the card will be another where we make 4 Valentine's Day themed cards. I have 2 other classes as well, but they will be towards the end of the quarter. The new calendar comes out the end of this month so check out the Stamp Art Store website for dates and times. You can always leave me a comment with your email address and I will send you the dates.

I have a couple of weeks to finish other projects and get things in order for the holiday. I am hoping to get a few things up on Etsy as well, but I think I have kinda missed the window for Christmas and I need to move on to Valentine's Day! I do have a few cute things I just need to put the final touches on that I can put up in the next few days.

I was making some Christmas cards (for me!) and I was thinking about Stickles. You know the little teeny bottles of wonderfully colored glitter glue? I love those darned things, especially this time of year. Since I have used them so much lately I realized that they require some instruction for the newbie. So if you are a Stickle newbie, listen up.

The regular Stickles have a nice fine tip to write with, but honestly they look better if you put just a thin coat and smush it around with the tip. The new Distress Stickles have a fatter tip, but you can do all the same things with them I promise, and not as many clogs in the tip. All of them take FOREVER to dry if you glop it on thick. My advice is to do a really thin coat and add more if needed. If you are covering a large area I like to use my finger to spread them out. Like I said, you can always add more.

If you are covering something like lettering where you want a fine line, it works well if you do a practice run on some scratch paper just to get the feel of how fast they come out and how much to squeeze. Then, work kind of fast, don't hesitate. Kind of like writing frosting on a cake. If you slow down the frosting gets thick and gloppy.

If you happen to get too much-it happens-keep toothpicks handy. They are invaluable to remove extra stickles and spread them out along a line or shape. If I am going along and I get a blob and then a skip, I just go back over it with my toothpick and smooth it down and spread it along the line. It is also a good idea to have a pin lying around to unclear clogs. I don't get too many, but every once in awhile... I hope this helps and make sure to use them ALOT so you get lots of practice! Just a little advice from your friendly neighborhood crafter!

We got a huge Christmas tree last weekend. We started decorating it, but we will finish tomorrow. Nick's girlfriend came with us and helped decorate and put up the lights. What a sweetie! Finally someone besides me who wants to decorate! We had fun tromping around the tree farm arguing about the trees, bossing each other around about how the tree goes in the stand, fighting over how the lights go on the tree. Good times! We even took both dogs, and packed a picnic lunch to eat up there! The weather was beautiful! Seriously, it was a fun day.
Well, I am about to turn into a pumpkin, so I'm callin' it a night.
Joy to the World!

Friday, December 5, 2008

It's confirmed. I'm now a techie.

Well, sort of. I got a new phone today and I went big. I went fancy. I went technology. Sort of. I got the new LG Dare touch screen! It is so cool! I can email and finally text more easily. I don't have my kids dexterity for texting and the eyes are going too, so reading the letters on the phone was really difficult. Now I can read the screen without my glasses and it seems fairly easy to use. I am so excited! I also have a better camera with a flash and all sorts of settings, and I can see my photos better on this screen as well. And you know how I love me some photos!

I have taken so many photos recently. Just since October, I have taken well over 1000 photos! It all started back in October when I went to Cambria. My friends inspired me to take the photos I want to and not the ones I think other people want to see. I took around 300 or so there, almost 200 at the pumpkin patch, 120 or so at Apple Hill, and I have no idea how many in Oregon. Thats alotta pictures! Its so much fun tho!

So all this talk about photos and I didn't even post one! Maybe next time!

Peace out dogs!


Thursday, December 4, 2008

The Unveiling......

As some of you know I did a custom order for Villainess Soaps ( a month or so ago. The photos are now on her website with the gift package under "featured products" on the 2nd row. You can see the tag hanging from the packaging. Cool, huh! I can now "unveil" the tags here on my site... da dada daaaa!

Brooke was awesome to work with and I suggest you visit her site ASAP to check out her stuff! I love the whole philosophy behind her products, and everything looks awesome! I plan to order some for myself! Thanks, Brooke!

Custom orders are always welcomed through my Etsy store .

While you are surfing around today, check out Tim Holtz's blog. He is doin' the 12 tags of Christmas again. He is freakin' amazing! Today and yesterdays are my favorites, but check them out for yourself! Thanks for all the tips and inspiration, Tim!

Today is my mom's birthday! Happy Birthday, Mommy! I'll see you later!

Take care and have a fabulous day!


Monday, December 1, 2008

Home, Sweet Home

Oh, so glad to be home! A little piece of my heart is still in Coos Bay with Grandma and Grandpa, tho. Miss you guys already! Come for Christmas! We had a fabulous time with them and the cousins! We are so blessed to have our family. Happy 70th Birthday to Dad today! We love you! Thanks for puttin' up with our shenanigans this weekend!

G & G are great tour guides as well. I wanted to share some cool photos we took on our way there, while we were there, and on the way home. Good times. I'm too tired tonight to say too much more. I'll do a longer post soon, I promise!



Thursday, November 27, 2008

Giving Thanks

Thankful for family today. Spending the day with my inlaws (and a few outlaws!) in Oregon. Here are a few photos.

Watch out for mad dogs!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Greetings from Oregon!

We made it! We're here! We had a great ride up! No rain, but lots of laughs and family bonding. Shot a few cool photos from the road that we wanted to share! Enjoy and Happy Turkey Day!


Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Over the river and through the woods....

To Grandma and Grandpa's house we go! Looking forward to our little adventure this weekend! I just had to do a quick post because we will be gone 4 days and I have been trying to do at least one per week. So... I decided to post a pic of my beautiful apple pies! LOL They came out so pretty! Apple Hill eat your heart out! My mile high looks and tastes good! My pumpkins looked beautiful too, but I wrapped them up and put them away before I thought of doing a pic.

Everyone went to bed already as we are leaving before the crack of dawn at dark-thirty something or other. Crafting is on hold for a couple of days while we tour Oregon and celebrate Thanksgiving and Grandpa's 70th birthday. I am excited to shove off and spend some time with the fam! I hope that you all have a wonderful and blessed holiday this year. Times might be tough but you always have those you love. Hold them close this holiday!
Take Care!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

A Few More...

I have been a busy little crafter lately! I am in the narrow window of time where I have finished classes for this year and I need to start making samples for next quarter. So.... I have been taking advantage of the time and experimenting with some of the new (and old!) products form Tim Holtz and other companies as well. I would like to get my own Christmas projects done this year too! I have gotten a lot faster, so I think I will be okay for that. My Craft Cave is much more efficient the way I have it arranged - although I still can't find some things! No big deal. I know they will turn up sooner or later! Probably right after I buy a new one!
The photos tonight are of a little book I made with the photos we took at Bishop's Pumpkin Farm back in October. I know they are not the best photos of the project, sorry. The lighting in the Cave is not good at night and I was getting weird shadows and flash reflections. I hope that you can see the stamping - that's my favorite part next to the pictures! I think I took over 190 pictures that day, and out of that I printed 80! I didn't use them all, but I did use about 75 or so! Not bad, I think for a little book!

I am really excited about the classes I will be teaching next quarter. I tried to listen to all the feedback I received from my students and put those ideas into play. I so appreciate feedback! These classes are for you and I want to be sure that I meet your needs as well as share some cool ideas with you! One of the things I heard over and over again was how students liked all the detail and creative ways to use stamps and materials. I did have one class where I had a little too much detail and the class ran way over time! I have tried to remedy that by keeping the detail, but limiting the projects so that we can complete them in 2 hours. If the project requires more time we will probably hold the class during the day or on the weekend. I am listening to you guys! I have a million ideas for classes, but not that much time to plan, prep, and teach them! So please be patient and keep checking back to see what I'm up to! I am trying to get it all in!
I have a few new items up on Etsy as well. I told you I have been busy! Actually, some of them were completed from last year and the year before and just waiting around for the holiday season again. There are a couple of cards and tags right now, but there will be more very soon! I am just putting the finishing touches on a few things. They are not photo ready yet! I am excited because it is something I have not really done before! You'll have to check back soon and see what I did... (What a tease!)
Okay, I am running out of steam, so I'm calling it a night! Have a fabulous day and do something creative today!

Saturday, November 15, 2008


Finally! I have some project photos for you! The tags will be for sale in my Etsy shop ( and the little pink seaside book was a project we did at Artsea Escape back in October. We could decorate the inside any way we wanted, and I just wanted to share what I did. More pictures are in the shop. I had fun with the tags using Distress crackle paint, Distress stickles, and Distress inks and fragments. So much fun to play! I haven't had time to do that in awhile. Enjoy the pics!

Last night was the last football game of the season and we beat the #1 team! Well Varsity beat them, JV tied, but we'll take it! It was a good game for JV. They played their hearts out. Good job, boys!
Have a great day!