Friday, August 31, 2012

in my garden


i just had a moment of panic typing that because i realized i had no idea what day of the week it is BUT I'M OK!  it's friday!  holy cow.

so week 1 of pezza in big school has been a great success!  she already doesn't want any hugs or kisses getting on the bus.  she had her very first babysitter last night and loved it and her teacher says she has done quite well. last night was parents night.  it's funny starting all over again.  this time is very different though.  i shared with y'all my apprehension regarding school and how tough it was with the boys.  i was awfully young, single, always moving around and never knew anyone there.  this time around i knew half the parents in the classroom and quite a few more at the school in general.  i hope it makes it easier.

i have had a long day and a long week.  on top of starting school and having the schedule we got used to go all out of whack i picked up a teeny 4 pound momma cat and 2 teeny babies.  momma has not got enough milk so i am doing bottle feedings every 2-3 hours.  they are sick too so i am doing all i can but...think good thoughts for us :)  in addition hurricane isaac went right over my mom's house.  luckily they did not have any damage and even still have electricity.  she cannot call locally but she can call me.  my stepdad has been going through chemo so he is pretty weak and of course they both go out and try to start clearing the debris from their 4 acres of yard and now are at the ER with my stepdad.  sheesh!  old people!  i called my step sister and she went to meet them at the ER and i told her to make them quit with the crazy yard clearing!

i played around a bit more with my inktense pencils

i drew the flowers first and added some doodling to the stems
next i added some color with the inktense pencils - not a lot - i put in my darks and lights all at once.

then i used a water brush to blend it all.  after it dried I splattered some Luminarte Silks across the page.  i am thinking i may make a garden series or something :)  ok i am off to bottle feed teeny kittens!  check in tomorrow to see what i did for the new color me creative challenge!

Monday, August 27, 2012

fun cupcakes!

happy monday!

yep happy!  today was pezza's first day of school - BIG school!  rode the bus and everything!  oh life is bliss.  i love her to bits of course but momma needs a break!  and that's what happens with the third kid.  the first time i put one of my babies on a school bus was 16 years ago and i was a distraught WRECK!  he was fine and couldn't wait to go but i put his little self on that bus and waved as it drove away thinking "i hope I see you again..." and then i cried and cried... until i had him back home safe that afternoon.  fast forward to now - see ya kid don't let the door hit ya in the ... on the way out!  lolol!  the only twinge i feel is that i will now be held hostage by the school schedule instead of being able to take off with her to places during the week when they are less crowded.  the best part - daddy stayed home to walk to the bus with us and to pick her up - i love that she has a daddy that's so involved in her life.  i explained to her that when she came home me or daddy would be there to meet the bus and she says "really!?  one of my parents is going to be at the bus stop!?!?  UGH!  i hate that."  the teen years are going to be super fantastic :P

so what did i do with my first day of freedom?  i got my hair done!  not only did i get highlights for the first time EVER but i got purple highlights!  special treat from my hubby!  i NEVER spend money on stuff like of pez and hair at the end of this post for those curious!

i have a page from one of my art journals for you today - another sketch and inktense play page

i really had fun with this one!  i sketched in the squares and then added the cupcakes

these two are my favorites!  once i sketched them in i used my black zig pen to ink it in and add squiggles as shading - a technique i totally copied from Dion Dior - she is so fabulously talented!  her work leaves me breathless EVERY single time!

Next I colored them a bit with my Inktense Colored Pencils and then blended with my waterbrush - gorgeous colors! 

and now here is happy pezza:

and happy momma:

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

tie dye fun and FREE book!!!!

counting down....

last week before school starts!  of course i am thinking of all the things i wanted to accomplish/do this summer that i didn't BUT i did do quite a few things i wanted too.  got the school haircut done.  my regular girl wasn't there so i didn't get one but i am going to go back and have big plans *wink* 

one of the things we got to do this summer that was on our list from the beginning is tie dye.  pezza asked about it in the spring and then i got a call and was asked to do some to promote the new FREE eBook on favecrafts - How to Make Tie Dye Shirts, Decor & More: 18 Tie Dye Patterns. 

How lucky is that!?!?   We were so excited when our fabulous Tulip Tie Dye kit arrived

Oh just look at those luscious BRIGHT colors.  now i have not done tie dye since my boys were small - that's a long time ago!  we rushed out and got ourselves some white clothes and got started - Pezza had two shirts, I had a skirt and a pair of shorts and i also had some white fabric i wanted to dye too.  I was uncertain how many pieces of clothing I would really have enough dye to do - we could have done more with JUST the first pack of dyes and we still have the extra packs of each color to do more!

I covered the table with a plastic painter's dropcloth from when we painted the foyer.  we started by doing several different tieing configurations - this is what determines your patterns!

 The Dye is so easy to mix - just add water.  We got to work and added our dyes to our stuff

bubba thought we needed a supervisor...

 The white fabric i had to dye had this pretty white design printed on it which resisted the dye so dyeing it made the pattern really stand out which i was happy about!

After adding the dyes the items have to sit COVERED for 8 hours at least.  This was accomplished by simply folding the long edges of my drop cloth over everything

after sitting i thoroughly rinsed everything to get the excess dye out.  then we laid them out and checked our handiwork

LOVE LOVE LOVE how bright these colors are!  not washed out AT ALL!

a quick run through the washer and dryer and we were ready to model some

where DOES this kid get this stuff?

hollyn was behind the camera directing me on how to pose for mine

SO pleased with our stuff and such fun!  we will be happily making more stuff with the rest of the dye packets.  so grab that FREE eBook and make some goodies for yourself and/or the kiddos too!

Monday, August 20, 2012

the queen

monday icky monday...

hi all!
i am happy to report that my goal of tackling yard work this weekend was met and exceeded! hubby and i spent all day saturday on the back yard - both sheds and my potting shed cleaned out and organized, weeding done, vegie beds prepped.  then yesterday pezza and i planted all of our cool weather vegetables and i weeded and cut down the front gardens, including the hated box woods the builder put in.  it was difficult to resist the urge to just lower the cutter down to the bottom and whack them off at their base :P  unfortunately i am now also incredibly sick with allergies but hey!  i got it all done at once so i only have to suffer once.  totally worth it though!  i how i hope the vegies do well! 

i have another journal page to share today - once again it is one from the mixed media class on Color Me Creative - i hope some of y'all join me for some messy mixed media fun!

this page is full of great texture!

i also used some fabby stencils from creative imaginations for the crown and frame

this is our last week of vacation before pezza starts kindergarten - she is so excited :)  i know some people have posted about being sad about school starting or a kid starting kindergarten but i don't feel sad at all.  we had a great summer but i am ready for school to be back in session! 

Saturday, August 18, 2012

CMC challenge and a freebie!

ahhhh the weekend!

anyone with big plans for the weekend???  us not so much.  our big plans involve lots of yard work.  mainly weeding.  we have these hideous sticker weeds that freakin TAKE OVER my gardens.  and they grow FAST.  i hate them. HATE HATE HATE.  so i will be pulling those nasty suckers out.  the boxwoods (oh dreadful boxwoods) in the front are in need of a haircut too.  and then there is my poor pathetic blueberry garden which i cannot keep clear.  i am throwing in the towel on that corner of the yard and pulling the blueberries out and letting the lawn take back over.  more trimming in the butterfly garden and then i can turn my attention to the vegie garden.  i am going to do cold weather vegies this year.  first i need to add some goodies to the soil and then we will be planting spinach, carrots, beets and sugar snap peas from seeds - which i never have success with yet keep trying to do.  i also have some little plantlets - mustard and collard greens, brocoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts, two kinds of cabbage and some lettuces.  yummy!  our tomatoes have been so good and the herbs are doing amazing.  we also got great jalapeno peppers and purple onions.  the cucumbers not so much.....and i just put a bed of red potatoes and sweet potatoes in that i hope does well.  next thing you know i will be building a barn.  KIDDING!!!

in other news i was back at the doc for test results.  ulcer, gastrtis and...wait for risk for diabetes.  i don't have it yet but am surely heading in that direction if i don't make some changes.  i am NOT pleased y'all!  my three fave food groups are sugar, butter and empty carbohydrates :P  fave meal of the day? dessert.  now i am reading up on what changes i need to make etc.  BLECH!  cut the sugar in my coffee in half this morning.  BLECH!  the ulcers and gastritis - he is pretty sure are the result of all of the NSAID pain relievers the ENT doc advised me to take for my headaches.  wow thanks alot.  so we are back to perhaps some doc will eventually think it would be a good idea to investigate the headache source and maybe address that....ugh!  needless to say i am feeling a bit cranky and sorry for myself.  the testing DID rule out a host of other things though so i am glad about that.

AND this brings me to my project for today - art journal page of course! this is for the new Color Me Creative Challenge - color some part of your image black.  I am also entering this in the Art Journal Cafe challenge - monochromatic.  soooooo....

heh heh, i like it.  the background is one i do in my mixed media class on color me creative using Luminarte Primary Elements powders.
you can see the shimery yumminess better at this angle.  The practically glowing pink flower is Luminarte Silks - also full of yummy shimmer!  i used extra heavy modeling gel and China Black Primary elements through a Creative Imaginations stencil and while it was still wet i sprinkled it with more Primary Elements powders.

once again i drew the girl myself and you can download her below if you'd lie.  she is colored with Prisma pencils.  you can see more of the shimmer in this pic too.

and now for a little game of who can spot the kitten:

our little foster babies have still not been adopted.  lately i have been letting them come upstairs to get them a bit more socialized and see if taffy - the tiny sickest one - would get less skittish and fearful.  whenever i am cleaning i gather the immense amount of cat toys strewn about the house and throw them on the bottom of the cat tree.  it is taffy's favorite spot to sleep.  i sure hope good luck comes our way tomorrow at the adoption event and they can find the perfect people :)

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

art journal page and a freebie

hello awesome readers!

here's hoping for a more productive day for me!  hollyn had a good time meeting her principal last night - she is very nice.  of course pezza also made the rounds of all the tables herself meeting and getting to know everyone like she was running for office as usual.  even the asst. principal commented it was like she was running for office and i told him that is what hubby and i have been saying about her for years.  she is certainly not an introvert :P

i have another class project for you today - remember you can sign up for class over on Color Me Creative!

 i LOVE the quote and it is something i need to try harder to remember on a daily basis.  as for the piece itself it was alot of fun to make and has SO many yummy things included in it!

you may recognize the tulips from a previous post - i scanned it into my computer and turned it into a digi which y'all are free to download if you would like!

if you want to know the how's behind the piece we talk ALL about it in class!  i will leave y'all with a pezza bit.  last night i sent her to her room for being ugly to me.  as she was stomping off she asked how long she had to stay in there.  i said until she decided to stop being ugly to me to which she replied that will happen when you start doing everything my way.  um yea that ain't happenin' missy.  so she disappears for awhile, collects herself and reappears on the scene in disguise:

she said her name was ella.  love this kid - so glad she isn't boring!

Monday, August 13, 2012

mixed media: gratitude is enough

hi all!
ugh monday.  i am feeling like a monday day today.  not motivated to get my work done AT ALL! so monday's chores went by the wayside 8-)  but i had plenty to do anyway because we were camping all weekend again so i had laundry from that and unpacking and such.  this afternoon we are going to a nearby restaurant for emerick elementary open house to meet her teacher and the new principal.  i have huge hang ups about school from my own childhood so i try to be as involved as i can manage even though it freaks me out.  we moved alot and i felt like the only kid there with a single mom (early 70s it was not nearly as common as now), plus a mom who never got involved in any part of it other than back to school night and school supply shopping which she hated every minute of and made it very clear she did :P  (my mom is great now don't get me wrong but growing up was rough).  on top of that i was just a weird kid and probably not nearly the outcast i felt i was.  the pezza apple did not fall far from the tree.  SO i am back to square one AGAIN.  had a one year break from school shenanigans after the two boys and we are starting all over.  but this time i think it might be better because i am better.  for one i am not a very poor single mom and we have not moved at all - with my boys i repeated some of my mom's patterns and so i was still always the "new kid" with no friends at parent stuff.  unfortunately i will be doing this with bright turquoise hands (front AND back) after an unfortunate tie dye incident earlier..........but hey they may as well see the real me from the get go since i usually have SOMEthing on my hands most people don't!

we headed to gettysburg this weekend with the camper.  man i love that thing!  gettysburg was wonderful - wish we had more than one day.  i might have to go up there for the day and get some pictures of the old houses.  i am obssessed with old architecture, especially houses.  my dream career was to become a restoration specialist for old houses BUT that did not happen.  instead i have toured loads of them and even worked as a tour guide in the plantation where they filmed all of the outside scenes for interview with a vampire (and yes tom cruise was a D bag even back then).  now i dream of making dollhouses like the old homes i love.  having grown up in the south though, i am used to the flambouyant houses and architectural styles down there and find northern stuff to be very austere.  however we toured one house in gettysburg, the shriver house, and while it was still somewhat austere it was the first tour and tour guide i have liked up here.  the ones in williamsburg are horrible and the one plantation i have been to here was not all that good either.  not terrible but.....anyway - i thoroughly enjoyed that.  we also hit pezza's first hands on children's museum and she was in heaven so next week i am going to take her to the one in baltimore and let her play all day.

now on to why you are really here - something crafty!

this is an art journal page we do in my mixed media class on Color Me Creative.  if you have not signed up but are interested in getting into the whole mixed media craze then what are you waiting for??? 

this first class is a technique class.  so i teach you all about the many many supplies and mediums used in mixed media and how to use them effectively.  then in september my project classes will debut - three different ones - mixed media for cardmakers and scrapbookers, mixed media and art journaling, and mixed media off the page.  do you have a lot of patterned paper scraps you need to use up or old pads that still have pages left?  this is a great way to do it!

Friday, August 10, 2012

watercolor pencil fun today!


AND TWO more weeks until school starts!  pezza will be heading to kindergarten.  unfortunately it is only half day kindergarten.  somehow the wealthiest county in america is one of the only ones that can't afford full day kindergarten.  not sure how that's possible but that's how it is!  we had her IEP meeting this week and i feel really good about her start.  now let's all cross our fingers she has grown up enough to behave at school and begin to learn to control herself :)  of course during the meeting she was the absolute most well behaved, adorable, polite child EVER put on this earth.  she really can be quite the charmer when she wants to.

i also had the joy of getting an endoscopy done this week in the endless battle to try and figure out what is wrong with me.  the good news was they put me to sleep to do it unlike the last 2 i had when i was 14 and was wide awake and fighting.  found an ulcer and hiatal hernia so on meds for that.  did some biopsies and i will hear the results next week along with the tests they ran on the NINE vials of blood they took 8-O egads!!!!  want to know the worst part?  i was laying in the recovery room and i thought man, it would be so nice to be admitted to the hospital for a few days......momma needs a break!

i did get a bit artsy this week too.  alot of what i have been working on has been for my online class at CMC which is technique based so i did not have a whole lot of finished stuff to show BUT i did manage to finish some recently so i can share!

today's page was inspired by someone else's class though - my friend Dion Dior is an absolute artistic master.

i am so drawn to her style and admire her so much!  she has a watercolor pencil class starting up on joggles in the fall.  when i saw her pictures i wanted to grab mine too!

so i did some little drawings

in some little boxes

and painted them in with my (limited) set of Inktense pencils

talk about fun!  i may have to do some more of these!
now i am off to enjoy the weekend!

Monday, August 6, 2012

a peaceful tree today

yay monday!

ok so maybe not!  but hey i tried!  we headed to the petsmart in reston - further away - with the kitties yesterday but it was very slow so no luck on adoptions.  :(  it is really starting to worry me and stress me out!  poor little sweet babies! w e had a temporary visitor too - johnny stayed behind at the reston petsmart until they can find him a foster home - we have enough here!

on to some crafting!  i have another card for ya - yep another card.  i decided to play with some of the splitcoast dare to get dirty challenges from last week and this is what i came up with:

i dug around in my massive collection of 6x6 paper pads and came across an old basic grey one - cappello - gorgeous!  the colors and the patterns! 

i stamped the tree from the M's Place stamp set at SCACD onto a book page and several different papers and cut it all out so i could piece them back together.  turned out super i think!  i used more papers from the same paper pad for the card layers and then in keeping my buddy suzanne's dirty girl challenge

i added a pop of salmon with paper and skittles. w hat do y'all think???

Saturday, August 4, 2012

cmc challenge and free digi!

happy saturday!

anyone olymipic-ed out yet?  i only watch the gymnastics so i don't get olympic overload but i sure do wish it was an option to watch sometime other than the middle of the night!  i have a couple nights on the dvr i have yet to watch.  i LOVE it and wanted to be a gymnast so badly when i was young!  how freakin' amazing was gabby?  and so well spoken i thought - it must take alot to be so focused as a teenager.

yesterday hubby was off because he had to work all night last night so we loaded up and headed to the mall for a little school clothes shopping.  i love gymboree but will only shop with a sale and coupon because they are so expensive.  pezza is all set and stylin' now!  on monday i will be at her school meeting with teachers and the principle about her IEP.  she was trying to tell me she is worried about school because she is a bit shy...BAH!  not a day in her life EVER!  i sure hope her teacher is ready for her!

as i mentioned i have joined the Color Me Creative DT for awhile and there is a new challenge up!  the challenge is to create a background for your image...

i am not sure this is what suzanne had in mind but of course my mind went immediately to mixed media!

i drew this little lady myself and colored her with Lyra colored pencils - you can download her and use her yourself if you want to at the end of this post.

the background has layers of lots of different goodies and this project will be included in my mixed media special projects:cards class.  in the meantime you can sign up for the mixed media basics class on cmc!  the orange flower was made with viva decor crystal gel and a silicone mold - both are available at SCACD.

and here she is - let me know if you have trouble downloading her!