Friday, November 28, 2014

It's the Holiday Season! (No matter how obscure)

My mom loved to celebrate holidays - decorations, activities, everything. My husband once told me that we had a holiday for every day of the year. Mom replied that she would feel complete when she had Groundhog Day dishes.

However, one legitimate holiday she liked to celebrate came from her German heritage (several other countries have similar traditions.) Every year, on December 5th, we put our shoes outside the doors of our rooms and looked forward to the ornament and candy that St. Nicholas would fill them with the next morning. The ornament might be from a series we had already started, or something that tied into an activity or sport we enjoyed the previous year, or just something that, "looked like you." 

By the time we left home, we had our own collection of keepsake ornaments to start our own trees. My parents kept up the tradition by sending ornaments, wrapped in brown paper with straw accents (St. Nicholas comes on a horse, and Mom figured it was hungry.) We were only allowed to open them on December 6th, when they would have been in our shoes if we were home

My question for you: What is your favorite ornament? Feel free to attach a picture if you have one.

Information on the origin and stories surrounding St. Nicholas can be found here

Monday, December 16, 2013

A confession about markers...

... see, I've never liked them much. Although I have enough markers for several art classes, I just don't feel like I know how to use them. In elementary school, when the teacher said, "and you can all use markers on this project," my friends were wildly cheering and I was thinking, "you said we CAN use markers, not we HAVE to use markers, so I'll stay over here with my crayons, which are MUCH easier to control." I was the designated filler in of large spaces that had already been outlined by my much more competent teammates.

And now we come to the present day. I have books on lettering, I've attended workshops on lettering, and I still can't make myself do anything but the very simple font I developed in high school, while everybody else was decorating things with wonderful names and cute icons on their notes. I've decided I must learn to letter, so I'm taking a wonderful online class through My Creative Classroom and starting to get the hang of it.

Monday, November 25, 2013


I have been trying to clean up the mess left by spending the week at my father's house. Unfortunately, I have been home 2 weeks and only can say my studio is usable today. This wouldn't be so bad, except that I have Thanksgiving cards yet to make! They will get done, stuff always does, but everything takes twice as long when I get the whole litany of, "Mom, I thought you said you would take me to get my hair done today," "I thought we could go buy Christmas lights tonight," "Mommy, my babies need you to take care of them right now!" And I can't work as long as I once did, due to age and getting out of the hospital not to long ago.

But, enough of that. Here is an autumn ATC I made a couple of years ago for a show on PBS. It's fairly understated, but tasteful. The stamp is from Inkadinkdo, the colored pencils are from EK Success, the ribbon is a scrap I had left over, and the card itself is watercolor paper. I computer generated the text and and added the rhinestones.

(And yes, I want to be a Viking, for those of you who followed Backyardigans)

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Santa's Pocket Watch

Here is my first Christmas project of the year. Inspired by a Tim Holtz project for Hobby Lobby (, I gave it a seasonal spin. Note the hour/minute hand points to 12 because Santa always makes deliveries at midnight, doesn't he? The red and green compass helps him find his way. There are some cookie sprinkles and bits of snow in the watch - he's had it a really long time. The charms just make him smile, and that's really what the season is about: making other people smile (and the birth of Jesus, but I'll save that for another post.)

I used Tim Holtz Distress Paints, Compass Coins, Game Spinners, Pocket Watch, and Seasonal 8X8" paper pad. Ranger's Liquid Pearls provided the shimmer. ICE Resin filled the charm and part of the watch. The bezel on the Santa and candy cane charm is from Spellbinders. Beads and small charms are from stuff I've had so long I'm not sure where they came from anymore. Cookie sprinkles are glass microbeads, and the snow is from Hobby Lobby, where most of the rest of the items were purchased.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Thank you Tombow!

Just learned that I won this great set of adhesives from Tombow's blog hop last week! Yay! More fun new toys to play with!

21 months later...

I've been extremely ill and am still recovering, my youngest has started occupational therapy, my oldest has her chronic disease mostly under control, so over all, it has been bad, but things are starting to look up. I've been getting back to my crafting and other creative activities, which is helping me feel better. I ran across the Holiday Blog Hop and it has been really inspirational. So I'll be working on some projects and hope to have something to show later.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

See me on the web!

Here's another project of mine on the web! Look for the Contented Bicone Crystal Assortment in the Create Your Style with Swarovski Elements line from EK Success. Included are the directions for this necklace.