Sunday, May 19, 2013

A turkey day LO

Hey y'all!

How is everyone?  It's the usual wild and crazy shenanigans around here.  I am beginning to think I am the Queen of Plans-Too-Much :P  Before I get into anything I wanted to touch on a topic I mention here occasionally.  Y'all know I have been waging battle against depression.  More specifically getting a handle on NOT taking my meds.  The good news is - I think I might FINALLY be winning - as much as one wins that battle.  The medication seems to have finally left my system and I am stabilizing - which translates into almost no crazy lunatic angry bitch episodes Smiley

But it is still tough sometimes to navigate.  I used to read a blog called Hyperbole and a Half.  Along with a butt-load of other people.  She has been waging the same war and has returned after 18 months with a post about it - a follow up to her initial post about it 18 months ago.  Both are raw and so true - you can read them here - Hyperbole and a Half.  Meanwhile I am still going med-free.  Some days are tough but others are really good.  I know that it's possible there could be a better medication choice for me but I am not there yet.  A plus side - i have lost just shy of 20 pounds of the 53 pounds I gained while on the meds!

One last update for ya - our little foster kitten family - The Breads.  When they came to us Biscuit, the mom, was very scared and had a cold.  The kittens were small, especially Baguette, the runt.  We got Biscuit on meds and I was hand feeding the kittens to supplement what they got nursing and everyone started gaining weight.  Biscuit began to relax and was less scared.  BUT saving rescued kittens is not for the sqeamish or faint of heart.  The kittens got sick too, especially Bun, the little boy.  After a grueling routine of administering 4 different meds a total of 7 times a day and stressful eye cleansing routines we decided they were not improving as much as we had hoped and last night we took them to our emergency vet hospital.  Any positive thoughts and good vibes y'all can send to these poor little things is greatly appreciated!  I think my hubby has trouble understanding why I put myself through this BUT (and maybe this relates to my topic above) it is really important to me that i don't just live but that my life has meaning and this is one of the things that makes me feel meaningful.  To me a life that doesn't include doing something for some OTHER life besides your own and your immediate loved ones just isn't a worthy life.  And so our hearts are with our little furry babies and we are hoping they pull through.  And if one or all don't make it we will continue to put our efforts into saving tiny little fuzzy faces when we are blessed with the opportunity to do so.


One thing that has been changing in my life is my studio focus - I started off as a scrapbooker and I am leaning back towards that.  Cards are great - smaller, easier to whip out and give a bit more instant gratification but I was beginning to feel wasteful since I have enough cards for 5 lifetimes!  Except kid birthday cards which you may see show up in a future post.  Scrapbook pages feel more useful to me.  Of course I still do the mixed media art work too!

Anyway I am slowly catching up and liking my system for doing so which you can read HERE.  This is a thanksgiving LO that haas sat around my studio half finished for ages!

I LOVED this paper pack from Close To My Heart - fall colors but not the typical fall colors.

I liked these pics because it was the first year Pezza really got in there and helped me cook!  Plus I hardly EVER have pics with ME in them!  This photo is not great - the pics are not actually that dark!

That awesome turkey is from Treasure Box Designs and cut using my Black Cat.

As always my sketch came from Page Maps - I couldn't scrap without them!  I am SO out of touch with scrapbooking and scrapbooking blogs though!

Do you have a favorite scrapbooking blog or scrapbooking challenge blog??????  PLEASE share it with me in the comments!  Especially ones using Cricut or other die cutting machines!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Flowers for Teacher Appreciation Week

hey y'all!

I am in recovery mode after an incredibly huge amount of shenanigans and hilarity resulting from a weekend visit from Catherine (AKA Silly Skittles) and Ann along with both of their significant others.

We packed in as much as we could and laughed until we cried - literally tears.  Good for the soul!  The slide show below includes more of our antics...

Yes, we were skipping down the aisles of Target...that's how we ROLL!

We are a perfect little group really - our hubbies get along well too.  I see MANY more gatherings in our long futures - next up, a 5K.  We are still trying to decide between the Warrior Dash and the Run For Your Life Zombie Run....

I have been wanting to do more "Series" type work lately so I decided to start with some flowers I really like creating:

I have posted the ones laying down previously though I can't remember if it was here or on the Luminarte blog...I should check....

I can't find them so maybe not....

ANYWHOO, The larger back two were done for FaveCrafts and you can see the full tutorial HERE.

I created these 2 for Pezza's teachers for Teacher Appreciation Week - the theme was "You help me grow" so I thought they would be perfect - flowers that don't die!

I began with MDF board of course - my favorite surface.  I covered it with a piece of scrapbook paper and then added layers of white Gesso and acrylic paints to soften the patterns on the paper but not completely cover them. 

Then I gave them some sparkle using Luminart Silks - the orange is put in with a plastic pallette knife and then I sponged on the green and pink through a piece of sequin waste to get the dotted patterns.  Next I stamped on the Butterfly from the Dreamy Daisies Stamp It Australia Set from Crafter's Companion.

The flowers are cut from more scrapbook paper using my Cricut.  I inked the edges and then adhered them in place.  For the centers I mixed Gel Medium and Luminarte Primary Elements Artist Pigment Powder.  I piled it on to the flower centers, added the buttons and Pezza sprinkled on the beads.  Doodling around the outer edges and Silks around the sides of the boards finished everything up!

What would YOU embed in the Gel Medium shimmer mixture???

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Kitty layout for NSD

Hey Y'all!

We are counting down to my buddies' Catherine and Ann's arrivals tomorrow!   Catherine is like my missing half I didn't even know I was missing!  We have a LOADED schedule for the weekend and I have been so busy this week I can barely see straight!  Trevor has moved in and started a job but his driving or non-driving situation has not been totally resolved yet.  That meant me getting up at 3:45 to drive 1 1/2 hours to bring him to work and get back home PLUS another 1 1/2 hours to go pick him up then running him around to get things for work PLUS several times of sitting in the DMV.  It's. been. fabulous.  BUT he's working, he has finally gotten his license back which means he can drive himself to and from work although that leaves ME stranded without a car.  AND because that isn't enough excitement I also FINALLY got a new momma kitty and 3 itty babies!

We have decided on names.  Momma is Biscuit, The girls are Brioche and Baguette and the little boy is Bun.  They are going to the vet for a check up - Momma feels a little warm and has begun sneezing.  Upper respiratory infection is one of the biggest dangers to foster kittens.  So cross your fingers for them!  I may be trying to do some bottle feedings with the littlest one too - she is seriously behind her brother and sister.

So what do I have for y'all today?  A scrapbook layout!  Yep I had some time to myself last weekend for my birthday and decided to get some scrapbook layouts done.  Imagine my surprise when I signed on to Page Maps - my hands down go to source for sketches - and realized it was National Scrapbooking Day.  Not only that but Page Maps is celebrating their 7th anniversary and has a great sketch contest going on - PERFECT!  The Grand Prize is a $200 gift certificate to A Cherry On Top - I could SO use that!  I have been on a spending ban for quite a long time and have had VERY little new stuff come in to my scrap room over the last couple years.  I thought the sketch was fantastic as always and got this layout done:

When I did thi sLO I didn't know I would be getting my first foster litter on Monday!  Well timed  - my LO focuses on how fabulous hubby is with all of our foster kitties! AND our own kitties!  He doesn't even really LIKE cats!  But they ADORE him!  

We have two couches - I am usually on one DIEING for a cat to come sit with me.  Hubby is on the other SURROUNDED by our cats and any foster cats we have at the time!  When I was a kid twin boys lived down the street.  I realize now that they were not particularly well looked after and they used to call my neighbor's dad "Miss" Woody.  So my poor lost foster kitties always call hubby "Miss Kevin."  I refer to him as Miss Kevin the Cat Whisperer!  In fact I have been unsuccessful at getting the tiny kitten to take a bottle so Kevin is going to try tonight - he iis usually much better at it than I am!

And speaking of not having gotten new scrapping stuff in ages I actually went on ACOT and was looking for pet or cat themed embellishments.  I came across a really cute pack of them and then realized I could make something similar using my Cricut.

So I made this little paw print embellie using the Meow cartridge for the paw and the George cartridge for the layered base.  I popped up the blue layer with foam tape - no need to buy some!  I am going to do some more of this type of thing I think - I have been getting very out of practice!

This is the Page Maps sketch Becky has posted for the contest - you can enter until May 31st!

What are you waiting for!  Head over to Page Maps and enter!

Friday, May 3, 2013

a birthday girl...


Our first trip out in the camper for the season was a HUGE success!  We always go somewhere fairly close to home for our first trip out JUST in case of disaster.  This time we went to Luray VA about 1 1/2 hours south of us.  The campground was gorgeous and peaceful.  We spent Saturday hiking to the highest point in Shenendoah National Park, roasted marshmallows and just relaxed!  Below are some of the highlights!


I have been running around like a mad woman since we got back though - seems I have three day's worth of stuff jammed into every single day lately!  But I am pausing for a moment to reflect...

About a million years ago blog land was a much much smaller place and somehow I stumbled onto this blog or she stumbled onto mine - I forget which way it happened.  Anyway, one of us suddenly realized we lived right near each other and a fun ride of a friendship began!  Me and Suzanne Dean {Scrapbitz} have had quite our share of adventures and I am happy to be joining in on her birthday blog hop today!  {mine is tomorrow - isn't that funny?!?!}  All of the girls on her Design Team are highlighting her fave color in our projects - Aqua/Teal.  Today I have some balloons to wish her a Happiest of Birthdays!

My background is layers of oil pastel, acrylic paint and turquoise glitter in light and dark shades of aquas.

Next I added a trio of balloons with India Ink and shaded them using my Neocolor crayons.

Of COURSE I had to finish it off with a black accent!  I used Pearl Viva Modeling Cream and a Splash of Color stencil and then I sprinkled liberally with Black ultra fine glitter.  I love the raised lava-like surface it gave me.

Your next stop on the hop is my sweet and talented friend Linda Payne.  If you have stumbled into the hop on accident and want to start at the beginning head over to my wild & wonderful friend Tina G's blog!

Happy Birthday Suzanne!  MWAH!