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!