Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Merfolk, Milestone Birthdays and More!

Well, it's August and I've been slacking off in the blog department, but let me tell you, that's the only place I've been slacking off.  In my last post I updated all the arty projects I'd been working on, including the Merfolk swap with Retro Cafe Art Gallery.  I finally got all 4 of my Merfolk completed and off to Kristin just in the nick of time.

Here they are, having arrived at Retro Cafe Art Gallery

During all of this, I was also preparing for my Mom's 80th birthday celebration.  I made all the invitations and got them mailed out, then I worked on centerpieces.  Most of my Tweety candy boxes from Easter were still with me and since they were done in pastel shabby chic colors, I decided they would be great for "favors" and table decorations.  To add to them, I took the plastic containers that Crystal Light powdered drink mixes come in and made them into more candy boxes.  

We held Mom's party at Farina's Winery and Cafe in Grapevine.  Carol and I figured Grapevine was a good central location between Fort Worth, Dallas and McKinney where most of us live.  Farina's in Grapevine has an antique store next door to it that they own as well and we rented the antique store for the birthday party and luncheon.  

Not only was it a great birthday party, but it was also like a mini family reunion.  

 Mom with her brother, Bobby and Bobby's wife, Kathy.

From the far left - Kevin, Paul, Cody, Maggie, Maria, Robert and Bella

Bobby & Kathy, Dad and Kathryn, Daniel (in the green shirt) and Amy

Me, Mom and my girls, Maggie, Maria and Rachel

And my lovely Mother

Now that the partying is over and Merfolk completed and swapped, my desk is clean and clear.  What am I going to do now?  Kristin at Retro Cafe Art Gallery has hinted at a Halloween Tombstone swap and I'm anxiously awaiting word on that one.  

Meanwhile, I'm going to do some sewing and make a few things just for the heck of it.  We've had a cool spell (for Texas in the summer) but the triple digit temps are heading back this week, so I'll be staying inside dreaming up projects and making art.

Until next time, everyone stay fabulous!

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Another Month Speeds By

Well, I did it again.  Let another month swoosh by me without a new post.  Seriously, can time just slow down a bit?

I've been working on several art projects lately.  Retro Cafe Art is having a Mermaid Swap! Kristin just keeps on creating the best things ever and my art supply budget is seriously busted!
Here's the first Mermaid.  I have another one complete, but am having a hard time getting a good picture because she is so shiny!  Mermen are now in the works.

Also in the works (constantly) is my Art Journal.  Truthfully, though, I really should call it my Art Book because there is very little journal-ing going on.

 These are the pages I've completed.  I did another one yesterday, but haven't taken a picture.

Below is my Compass Angel
She is made from the small 3-D Santos Cage Doll kit from Retro Cafe Art.  She stands about 12 inches tall.  I have a large kit that I am still pondering on.

Next is a chipboard crown, once again from - you guessed it - Retro Cafe Art!

 And here I am wearing it.  Can you believe that Kristin actually used this picture of me wearing it (along with the picture above this one) in her newsletter AND on her Retro Cafe Art Facebook page?  
She also used my Compass Angel in her newsletter and her Facebook pages for Retro Cafe Art and Coffee Break Designs.  I feel all so famous and stuff!

Well, as you can tell, I haven't been sitting around twiddling my thumbs!  Along with all the artwork, I have recently joined Oak Cliff Christian Church.  I am singing in the choir and have just attended my first CWF meeting/luncheon.  Oak Cliff Christian Church is a Disciples of Christ (not to be confused with Church of Christ) congregation. Think TCU.  TCU is a Disciples university, just like SMU is a Methodist university. Growing up, my family attended a Disciples of Christ church and it's good to be back with them.  Since this is such a small congregation, this year Vacation Bible School will just be 2 days, this Friday and Saturday.  I've volunteered to help out with arts and crafts.  I mean, what else, right?  

So I'm off for now (some may say I'm "off" all the time) and I'll try, try, try to not let another whole month go by before I post again.

Friday, May 2, 2014

A Winner!

Just popped over to The Crafty Scrapper blog to see who won the April challenge - and it was me!  WooHoo!
On the blog they posted "by Victoria" instead of "by Virginia", but what the heck, it's my creation and I've been called worse!  I called to "claim" my prize, but Gena isn't in and is off for a few days and Anita, who runs the Monthly Challenge wasn't there either.  I left my name and number and hopefully someone will get back with me soon. 

I'll even volunteer to go pick up my prize at the store (evil grin) in case there is something else there I can't live without - other than the whole dang store!
The prize-winning entry

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

The Crafty Scrapper April Challenge

This months challenge over at The Crafty Scrapper blog is to use black (and black ink doesn't count).  Most of the entries so far are scrapbook layouts, but the challenge is for a layout or other project.

I started out doing scrapbooking, but that quickly metamorphicised into mixed media projects.  Since I was in the store yesterday, I asked if I could submit something other than a layout just to be sure and was given a very enthusiastic "yes".

So here you go.  I will link this to The Crafty Scrapper blog:
Hopefully I'll be the winner of some wonderful goodies from that heavenly store in Waxahachie, Texas!

Supply list:  
Heavy black cardstock - I buy this at Hobby Lobby in 36 x 24 sheets
Embossing folder - Tim Holtz Alterations
Buttercream and Butterscotch Gelatos
Paper for rosette, background for Eifel Tower and flourish at top - Global 6 x 6 7 Gypsies
Black crystals - Glamour Glitz
Other supplies and image of Eifel Tower from my personal stash.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

A Michael's Disscussion Group and Other Happenings

It's been a couple of weeks since I posted here, so I thought I'd bring everyone up to date on what's happening. (Not a lot.)

I was invited to participate in a discussion group about craft storage at Michael's Corporate Office.  I've done a focus group there before, and since they offer a Michael's gift card for your time, I said, "Heck, yea.  Count me in."  So the discussion group was today at 10am over at one of their buildings in Irving, Texas.  There were nine of us participating at of that nine, five were Michael's employees.  That's not counting the employee running the discussion group and the other three of four who hovered in the background taking notes.  

Anyway, they asked stuff about what we needed in storage, what we'd like to see, if we liked colors (most said no) and how much we would pay for some items they are proposing to sell.  I'm cheap.  I couldn't afford any of their stuff now unless it was half price.

In the course of discussion, we all discovered what each considered our "main" craft and if we had dedicated craft rooms, etc.  Almost all of the gals (and one gentleman) had a dedicated room and most of them must live in fancy houses with all the nice craft furniture from what I could tell.  Lordy, they would be horrified if they was where I work!  

Anyway, I certainly hope I get another invite to a Michael's group in the future.  I went straight to the store and used my gift card and my 40% coupon!

On other fronts, with Easter fast approaching, I've concluded working on Easter crafts.  I was sorely disappointed that two of my three Tweety Candy Boxes didn't sell, but that's OK.  I'll have them for decorations next Easter!

Do you have a pile of craft projects just sitting around staring at you?  I do.  I've got a lot of cool things I've ordered from Retro Cafe Art to make, but haven't done them because I'm afraid of messing them up.  Am I the only one with this problem?  I ordered a couple of Articulated Santos Cage Doll kits and both a medium and a large 3-D Articulated Santos Cage Doll Kit.  I finally got brave enough and dove in and made up one of the "flat" dolls.  

I think she turned out really well, so now I feel brave enough to make another one.  It may take some time before I'm up to tackling the 3-D dolls.

Friday, March 28, 2014

Tag! You're it!

Several weeks ago, I went to The Crafty Scrapper in Waxahachie and met my Facebook friend, Melissa Hines.  After browsing in the store and purchasing a "few" things we went off to her house and had a wonderful time in her craft room.  She showed me some techniques and I showed her how to make a paper clay bird.  After hours of fun accompanied by pizza and Coke, she sent me home with a cache of cool stuff we'd embossed, die-cut, etc. 
Yesterday I dug into that lovely little basket of goodies and made this tag from some of the wonderful stuff she sent home with me.

This is a manila tag that was embossed with a Tim Holtz embossing folder.  I semi-dry brushed it orange then, using a baby wipe, smoothed brown over that to bring out the detail.  Melissa has the Tim Holtz die to make the rosettes and we had made some of those plus we cut out some leaves from the same paper.  Meanwhile, I purchased her Cuttlebug from her and have bought a Sizzix die of the same type of leaves.  The "create" and "enjoy" word art is from a Scrap Girls digital kit and the rose is a plain white paper rose that I died with a diluted solution of Adirondack "Carmel" Alcohol Ink.

Today I received Happy Mail from Retro Cafe Art.  Included in the box of goodies were 12 of the new Faux Faberge Egg kits.  I will be making a few more Easter eggs within the next few days.

Meanwhile, Happy Crafting, everyone!

Monday, March 24, 2014


 I know it's too early for Halloween, but I've got a ghost story for you.

As you may, or may not, know, we live in a nearly 100 year old house.  It's a great house.  Two-story.  The upstairs is a complete 2-3 bedroom apartment with it's own kitchen and bath.  Downstairs, where we live is two bedroom/two bath with really large rooms.  Daniel bought this house with his ex-wife, Vicki, and has owned it for about 18 years.  I moved in in 2002 and ever since I moved in, there has been a ghost.

No one else hears it, feels it or is bothered by it except me.  It's not malicious and seems to be caring and reassuring.  I think I know who it is/was.  It only "appears" in our master bedroom.  The word "appears" is in quotes because I have never actually seen it.  I sense it, I feel motion if it sits on the bed next to me and once I even heard him talking to me.  Yes, the ghost is a man.

Anyway, one morning Daniel got up around 7am and I was still sleepy and not ready to get out of bed.  It was hot in the bedroom and he asked if I wanted him to turn the ceiling fan on.  I mumbled "no" and groggily rolled over.  About 3 to 5 minutes later, the ceiling fan came on.  It was running on high speed which we never use.  I looked up and around and didn't see or hear Daniel, so I got up and found him in the dining room.  I asked him how come he turned the fan on and he said he didn't.  I just looked at him and told him that it was on and running on high too.  He came in the bedroom and checked for himself, and sure enough - fan on and running.  

Daniel knew about all the ghostly encounters I'd had so we discussed what we should do.  We came to the conclusion that I should have a talk with the ghost.  So I turned off the fan, sat on my side of the bed and told the ghost I understood he was just trying to be helpful and that he cared for me.  I recognized his concern and appreciated it, but truthfully, I weirded me out some.

After that "talk" the ghost went away for quite a while.  No more sitting on the bed next to me while I was sleeping.  No more talking to me in the wee hours of the morning.  No more ceiling fan turning on.

Just recently, a ghost is back.  I don't think it's the same one.  I can tell by the movements and sounds it's a different ghost.  It's not scary - well not a lot.  Last night Daniel and I went to bed.  I read for about an hour then turned the bedside light off.  I was reading a paperback, but my Nook is on the nightstand, plugged in and these is a little green light that glows from the plug.  Even if I'm so tired the book falls on my face, once I put it down I still have a hard time getting comfortable enough to fall asleep.  I turned toward Daniel, then I turned back the other way, facing my night stand and as I did, I saw a shadow come between me and the light from the Nook charger.  I was spooked some, but I thought, well the doors were open the other day, maybe a moth got in and was attracted to the light.  Yeah, right, really big moth.  I watched for a while, huddled under the covers, but didn't see anything else.  Daniel was snoring and sleeping soundly and I didn't want to wake him up.  Eventually, I drifted off to sleep.

At 4:15 this morning something caused me to wake up.  I could hear a strange sound, almost like running water.  I lifted up on one elbow to hear more clearly and as I did, I felt Daniel get up from the bed.  I said, "I hear a weird noise".  He walked through the bedroom door into the next room and I could hear him walk down the hall.  Of course it was dark and what I saw was a shadow of him walking out of the bedroom.  I was tense, waiting for him to come back and report.  Sheba and Shortie sleep between us every night and I could feel them next to my back under their blankets.  Sheba was making little snuffly sounds and I turned around to pat her and there was Daniel.  Fast asleep, in bed.  He was making the snuffly sounds.  I almost woke him up then, but he works so hard and he does have a hard time sleeping sometimes I just didn't want to wake him.  I just laid back down with the covers up to my chin looking, watching, straining my ears for anymore noises.  Nothing happened.  Eventually, I went back to sleep.

When we both got up later this morning, I told him about what had happened.  He got up earlier than I did this morning and he told me that when he walked past the kitchen he heard two distinct thumps like someone setting something heavy on the counter-top.  He looked in the kitchen and didn't see anything, so just put it out of his thoughts until I told him my ghost story.

So there you have it.  Our house, or maybe just me, is hainted!  Am I scared?  Not really, sometimes freaked out a bit, but it seems like a friendly ghost, at least a protective one, so I won't call an exorcist yet!