Saturday, December 20, 2008

latest crafts

Okay, so I'm a little behind on my blog. Oops. I have been officially running the sprint to Christmas since late September. Hence, only one post since then. Tisk, tisk. But, I'm repenting and posting some pics of the latest crafts. I sold these crystal ornaments at a few craft fairs this year. They are the acrylic jewels you put in candle displays. Turned out pretty fun.
And these are the glass blocks I sold at those craft fairs. (Hence, another reason why no posting has been going on.) These are glass blocks stuffed with Christmas lights and wrapped like a present. They add very nice light under a tree, on a mantle, in a window...  I actually lucked out and got them put in a little shop about 20 minutes from my house.  Very flattering.

And this is the fall tree. Well, branch, really. I took a branch and hot glued silk fall leaves on it. Talk about cheap! I did this for Thanksgiving. I had the silk leaves and glue already, so it only cost me time, and not much of it. This pic is a little late for the season, but it looked great on the mantle with the reflection from the mirror.
I'm also in the middle of more ornament making. I'll post pics soon, even though it might be past Christmas when I do. 

Friday, October 10, 2008

You know you've been at the computer screen too long

1-when your eyes start to cross
2-when they go completely out of focus the instant they see the screen
3-when you see little purple squares when you close your eyes
4-when you can't count how many windows you have open
5-when your eyes start to slide down the screen against your will
6-when your eyes are watering
7-when the screen leaves up images from the window you just closed

These are happening to me write now. Even the words I type are a little fuzzy and I'm blinking a lot.  Huh, I can't even get the correct form of 'right' right now. I think I need a little sleep, or a lot. This virtual world is really getting to my cerebellum.
The picture at the top is of a butterfly at Mount Vernon.  The gardens there were just wonderful. We went a few weeks ago and very much enjoyed a non-cerebral day, walking in honest-to-goodness dirt and trees, rather than looking (more like squinting) at them on a much abused computer screen.  Virtual reality has nothing on the tangible, tactile world.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

sprout a couch

This was just so clever I had to put it on my blog.  Because some day (when I get a yard) I'm going to make one! Here's the link: Sprout a Couch

I just thought it was so funny.  And I love that magazine, too.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

latest projects

I made a bunch of backpacks when my sisters came for a visit.  They were for Christmas gifts, I just gave them 6 months early because we used them on a trip to New York. But I forgot to take pictures of the backpacks before I gave them away.  So, here is one I made for myself.  Kind of fun.  And you only need about 1/3 yard fabric to do the whole thing.  I lined it, so it would be 1/3 yard of both fabrics.

I'm fairly pleased with how it turned out.  And really pleased that it used up a ton of my scrap fabrics.  So, this project fits with my attempts of being resourceful and giving something more than one purpose.  Not only does it put the pretty fabric to good use, it cleans up my "creativity corner."  (My dad lovingly labels these kinds of craft supply corners "crap supply" corners.) And as I mentioned in one of my (way) earlier posts, this project also fits with my desire to do handmade gifts this year.  Whatever it is, it's nice to be happy with what you accomplish, and clean up and out all at the same time.  

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Singing Contest

My sisters entered an a capella singing contest and the only criteria for winning is how many times it's viewed on youtube. So, anyone reading this, could you help them out and take a look? The more views, the better.  Just some good clean singing in a silly song. No, I'm not in the video, if anyone thinks girl #3 looks like me.  She does, but it's not me.  And if you're really good, there's some dancing eyebrows toward the end.  See if you can find them! And feel free to spread it around! Thanks and here's the link:

Sunday, July 13, 2008

shin splints

So, I've got them and they're not going away. I've bought new shoes, I've stretched, I've quit running for a while, and I've eaten tons of bananas. Why are they still hurting? Any ideas? This 1/2 marathon thing just might be the end of my running career. Not looking so hopeful, how do I turn this around?

Sunday, June 29, 2008

digital scrapping

How do you do it!  I have not a clue and I see all these other cute blogs, and start to whine because mine is so boring!  Somebody help me!

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Anthropologie addict

I admit it.  I'm an anthropologie addict.  Anytime I am remotely close to one, I will spend the extra on gas just to go to it, since I can't spend the dough to actually buy something from there. The ideas in there are just amazing. You should see the butterfly japanese lanterns they have right now.  And, I believe I've gained a lot of my inspirations in there.  For example, this picture frame. I was bored, again, with how it looked.  So I borrowed an idea from Anthro, which is cover everything in fabric.  The picture above is the before.  And below, the after.  It's hard to see, so let me explain.  I spread watered down elmer's glue all over the wood part, dipped the fabric in watered down glue, and draped it over the frame.  After it dried, I trimmed it because the fabric was stiff and stuck. Anthro does this all the time.  It makes it a little more organic and not so stark. So, thank you Anthro for the ideas.  That's all I can afford.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

I think I'm crazy.

Know why?

Because I'm seriously considering running for 13 miles non-stop.  It's insane, and yet, the temptation is so real, just to say "Yeah, I ran a half marathon."  Yep, half and half only.  I've not totally lost it.  This is just a moment of temporary insanity.  And one that I am completely committed to--I think.  (That doesn't sound complete, does it.) Anyway, if anyone has any advice, post away!  I'm going to need it!  

Friday, May 16, 2008

My whole family's asleep!

Except me!! That's why I can post another post!  But maybe I shouldn't, after all, it is getting late.  But not that late, you say.  It's only 10:30 and by anyone's east coast standards, the night's just begun! But you see, as a former westcoastian, I admit to still thinking like one. So I'm torn, do I stay up late, as my west coast mentality says it must be, or do I stay up early, as the east would insist?  Alas, I don't know which coast to pick.  Now normally, I would be right there in bed snoring with the best of them (grinding my teeth actually, but I digress) and as a mother, that sleep time is precious.  It's like a card I got just before my son was born.  It said, "when you become a parent, you begin to realize how important the little things are.  Like sleep."  And that has been all too true for most of my motherhood years.  But then there comes a point when you stay up late just to get something done because your day is full of good little things that keep you from doing other, not-so-important-but-good-to-do things.  It's a vicious cycle. But just because I'm feeling chatty, and because my whole family is sleeping in a tent in the front room (camping trip got rained out, but I'm okay with that-running water and good bed on my list of absolutes of sleeping), I'm here.  I'm up.  And in the debate of to snore or not to snore, I choose to not to.  I'll regret that in the morning.

Dresser redo

So I got bored with a plain brown dresser.  I painted it white, then decided to take a picture. Still boring.

So I did this to it...

Not boring.  This was done with wrapping paper, ribbon, and handles from the dollar store.  I modge-podged the wrapping paper to the drawer. (I wonder if there is better glue for that, I got a few bubbles.  Ideas anyone?) Then I glued black & white polkadot ribbon for the edging of the drawers, and put black handles (they are hard to see in the picture) in the middle. Cost: $7.50.  The dresser was a hand-me-down. It'll do.  I probably won't move it, though.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Frame collage

I get a lot of inspiration from just observing, then modifying.  This one is a twist on something I saw in PotteryBarn.  Instead of using (and buying) all matching frames, I just took all my old unmatching frames, painted them matching black, and put sepia tone pictures in them.  I put this in my entry way, which is where the initial idea was in PotteryBarn.  Very cost effective.  Oh, and the big center picture is actually the Family Proclamation.  I used wordart to make some of the key words bigger and printed it out on my computer in a different format than what is standard distribution. I glued it to foam board, (which had been painted black, too), then had B build a frame for it out of moulding. The picture of the Arizona Temple right beside it was drawn by my sister.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Something else

At the suggestion of Annie, I am going to include some of my crazy craft ideas.  I hadn't planned on including that in this blog, since it was originally just an outlet for random thoughts.  But that's just what some of my crafts are: random.  So, here's this week's little idea (with a picture! what luck!).

I wanted a headboard for my room (married 8 years, and master bedroom is the last to get the attention it deserves--and still this is only a temporary fix!) The headboard had to meet some pretty stringent limitations:
1. had to be dirt cheap
2. had to be easy to move or disposable
3. had to be big impact and add weight to my light room
4. had to be interesting enough to look unique but good
5. had to be done with little or no prep
6. had to come together fairly quickly (not a ton of contruction.)

Here's the inspiration: (found at, cost: $998)
Nightingale Headboard

My cost: $9 to make this headboard.  I used yarn.  Wrapped pvc pipe and two golf balls in yarn.  I used tacky glue to attach the yarn to the wall in the pattern above.  Gives it a little 3-d effect and moldability.  

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Wind storm

That's what we are having outside right now.  It was interesting to watch the storm come in, tearing off siding of the house, blowing leaves and debris, even trees, sideways.  It blew over two trees, two of my favorite trees that give us some privacy during the day.  I hope they get put back up soon.  The heavy grey clouds seemed to skim our house top and moved so fast.   The power went out at the church which canceled our ward's pinewood derby contest.  This actually was a bit of good news since my kids are sick and couldn't go.  Now, we will be able to reschedule and hopefully we will be well.  Especially since my dh made the pinewood derby car into a corvette, no surprise.  Candy apple glossy red, and it really does look like a corvette.  Amazing. And my son really wanted to see it race.  But this has nothing to do with the windstorm outside, or maybe everything to do with that storm.  I'm just glad to be inside, even though we are sick. How pleasant to be sick in a place that is warm and dry and safe and comfortable.  To me, that is a blessing, sick and all, to be physically uncomfortable only because of a cold, not because of the cold you feel from the wind or weather. You are probably going to get sick, no matter where you are.  I'm grateful to be sick in such a comfortable place and have the conveniences of life that help to ease the misery of the sniffles. It really could be so much worse. Gratitude shows up in funny little ways, doesn't it.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

By the way

How did you do on your January goal?  I accomplished mine.  All started sewing projects DONE!  Wahoo!  Now on to February.  My goal:  be cleaner.  I have a habit of leaving out the cereal in the morning and the bread at lunch.  I am trying to keep the kitchen just a bit tidier.  I am measuring it with a bean jar, 10 beans in it.  For every time I mess up, I remove a bean.  At the end of the day, I empty the jar into a big jar.  When the big jar is full, I get a prize!  (Yes, I am motivated by shallow, juvenile bribes.)  At the end of February, I will be able to measure how well I did on my goal by how many beans in the big jar.  Even if I don't get a tangible prize, I will be rewarded by physically seeing, both in the jar and in my house, the results of my efforts.  Already it's made a difference.

What's your February goal?

Belated Valentines

Did it pass you by too soon?  Or are you glad it's over?  True it's argued to be too commercialized, too unimaginative, too trite, too  shallow, too "single-awareness" of a holiday celebrating romance.  But, you know, that is said about every holiday. Maybe not the single-awareness part. To all the holiday scrooges, I offer this counter:  It's a holiday for a reason. You don't have to celebrate anything that irks you. But allow others to enjoy their celebration of something good without spreading the gripes.

This year I've taken a pledge.  I, too, sometimes feel that holidays are advertised to the extreme.  But I decide to approach it from the angle of what can I do to make it matter, and better, not what can I do to gripe.   In my effort to make it matter, I'm trying to do gifts of thought, not price. Not to demean the value of chocolate or flowers: I admit those have a special place in my heart, and I am shallow or typical enough that I do enjoy those standard gifts.  (Standards are also standards for a reason).  So, what does I mean by gifts of thought, not price? Mostly, handmade or thought-full gifts.  These include gifts of my time instead of my money.  And I think that most people try very hard to spend their thought as well as their money on their gifts for others.  And I like to encourage that. 

I am lucky enough to have a Valentine in my life, and for the Romance day this year I wrote him a book.  It's simple.  It's made of cardstock and a manilla folder I had in my house. Only 9 pages in big print, each page with a different kind of fabric heart in the center. And it is the best valentine I've given.  What a reward for me to see his face as he recognized the silly, sometimes cheesy, but specific reasons of why he is special to me.  And he's not the cheesy type.  But it mattered to him.  And it was better than anything I could have bought because it was so personal.  So what about the pledge, you say?   It's this:  I pledge this year to spend more giving of my self, not my money, on the people that matter most to me.  Not only will it be healthy for the wallet, it's healthy for the heart.

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

New Year's tents

I've been thinking.  A dangerous pastime, you say.  But, nonetheless, it happens.  And it's happening to me.  And tonight, I am actually going to tell you what I am thinking about, and not get lost in the running and rising stream of consciousness that often jumps the banks and floods my writing. I am thinking of New Year's goals.  Isn't everyone?  After all, it is the very first day of the very first month of the very brand new year.  And it's nice to have a mark that says, "this is the beginning," (that kind of beginning would be a birthday, literally.) And it's also nice to have a mark that says, "let's start over," the kind of mark that today would be to anyone already arrived on earth.  And I love start overs, or fresh starts.  That's why I love moving (my dh thinks I'm crazy.) Yet, the beginning of a new adventure in a new place is extremely attractive to me.  My grandma would say "You gotta keep 'em building their tents," when my mom would wonder how to keep us kids from getting bored.  (You know, the kind of tents that put the broom up on phone books and drapes sheets across the top for the roof.)  It's sort of manifest destiny. "Every living thing is under that necessity for continuous advancement."  
Okay, but back to the beginning:  with a beautiful fresh start, which I love having those, I am choosing to make my year's goals in short terms.  For example, this month, I am finishing my started projects.  And I am letting new ideas wait.  I will write them down, hold on to them, but they will wait patiently until all the old are cleaned up, finished up, used up, and put up.  This is my fresh start.  By clearing away all the old things, getting them done, like all my sewing that I've begun and never finished.  That's January.  I will have all my started sewing done by the end of January.  (See the purse, I did that tonight.  So far, so good!) And when February comes, it's on to a fresh new goal.  I don't know what that is yet, but that's alright. The beauty of my new year's goal is that it is to make a goal every month, and accomplish that goal in that month.  So, I have the flexibility to make adjustments and new pursuits without feeling like I let myself down for not accomplishing a long term goal.  I keep my advancements in short increments of time, so they are easier to measure.  And I feel like I am advancing at a faster pace.  Or at least continually advancing, moving on to new goals, new places, new tents, and new beginnings. And with those beautiful, progressive thoughts, I wish you a Happy New Beautiful Year.