Friday, July 30, 2010

Fun Store!

If you are ever in AZ, make sure to make a trip to Mesa to visit Mystic Paper.

It's a wonderful shop filled with all kinds of scrapbooking goodies, found items, ephemera etc. Classes have been taught there by Tim Holtz and Claudine Hellmuth. I took pictures on my phone but dont know how to upload them from my phone!

Monday, July 26, 2010

Friday, July 23, 2010

I'm Not Sure What This Says About Me

It's Friday night and I'm a little bored so I did this writing analysis thing. It analyzes a sample of your writing and tells you who you write like. Ready?

I write like
Stephen King
I Write Like by Mémoires, Mac journal software. Analyze your writing!

I'm actually quite amazed because Stephen King is one of the most prolific writers in modern history and I  have read a number of his books and surprise surprise with movie references, love "Misery" and "Dolores Claiborne" among others. But let's face it, the man can write some seriously scary and twisted stuff. I'm relieved  that the analyzer thing didn't come back with "no match go back to school". Anyway, it's a bit of fun. If you want to play, go here:

Thursday, July 22, 2010

I Triple Dog Dare You!

I love the movie "A Christmas Story". Even though TNT or TBS or one of those "T" channels shows it for 24 hours every Christmas, I have it on both VHS and DVD. And, as I've said, I can pretty much relate anything to a movie quote. So when I stumbled across what I'm posting about, the scene from "A Christmas Story" where Ralphie describes the "oh no he didn't" moment of going straight to the triple dog dare popped into my head. I'm just twisted that way.

So while making my blog rounds this morning, I was over at Diary of a Chocoholic  which led me to Leslie, over at her blog Words Of Me Project who has a wonderful challenge up:

So for 31 days, starting July 26, I will do just that.
  • Write...Blog or journal
  • Create...on the go or in my space
  • the moment, happy, content, appreciative

I triple dog dare you...will you take the challenge?

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Getting Ready For Vacation and Tuesday Hops

I'm sure normal people just go on vacation but not me. Maybe it's knowing that I'll have limited time to make things while I'm on vacation that I have to make things for my vacation? So I'm either prepping projects I can work on while on vacation or making things to use on vacation. Anyone else do that? One of the things we like to do is keep track of the things we do on our vacations. It's easy to think you'll remember so that when it's time to scrapbook that vacay, you'll just know but HA! The older I get, the easier that sounds and the harder it is. So I started keeping travel journals which I can refer back to when doing my scrapbooks or when I just need a mental vacation. This time of year is perfect to find these:
And, as you can tell by now, if they're on sale like they often are at back to school time...I buy multiples! I think I got this last year as a pack of 2 and they were 2 packs for $1 or something. 

Trace the shape onto your choice of scrapbook paper. I went outside my usual neutral pallette:

and cut out a front and back cover in  coordinating papers. I Mod Podged these onto the composition book and tore some other coordinating papers to collage on. I had some chipboard frames I picked up on clearance that I covered with a scrap of the coordinating paper:
I didn't want to put a lot of heavy embellishments on my journal because it was going to be in and out of my bag so I used a combination of rub-ons, clear alphabet stickers, and things left over from other projects that were printed onto clear label paper to decorate. Of course I couldn't leave it blingless, so I had to put some self adhesive rhinestones on it :) 

Welcome to those stopping in from :

Tuesday Tag-Along 
Update to respond to a question from the comments:
I tore a wide strip of a third piece of paper to cover the spine. Applied Mod Podge to it and folded it over the front and back so about 1/2 of it shows on each side. Hope that makes sense!

Linking Up At:

Monday, July 19, 2010


I love jewelry. "Good" jewelry which I am really lucky to have been  given by Mr. Chocolate, and then there's the stuff I make lol.  One thing I like about making jewelry (well about making anything) is that you can reinvent it once you get tired of it or if you're not happy with it or if it breaks, and then I don't feel guilty about making more of it than I can wear because I can always transform it into something else.

I consider myself a "stringer" more than a beader. I don't weave with beads or do things requiring knotting because I'm not precise or patient enough. I do have a really cool knotting tool that a friend of mine's wife created. I still need to play with it.

Anyway...babble babble, I usually get supplies at the big box stores...Michaels or JoAnn's , both of which have improved their beading sections in recent years. But a couple of times a year, I get to treat myself with trips to amazing suppliers. Here in my home state, we have Shipwreck Beads  which is overwhelming on your first visit. You know you're in trouble when they have a lounge area (aka "man chairs") , cafe, and espresso cart because you are going to need a break to sit and regroup!

My other more limited, but sheer indulgent pleasure is, Scottsdale Bead Supply which to me is like the Tiffany of bead stores, or the Callebaut of chocolate  I'm definitely on an allowance there because as the saying goes, you get what you pay for and their materials are all fine quality. I walk through the store and take my time in each section, making probably three or more laps around before narrowing down my choices and then another two or three more laps to decide what I want, I mean can afford.  Then I do things like get them home and am so paranoid to use the materials because "OMG what did I spend?" and then they sit in my stash which is kind of pointless isn't it? Like the tee shirts we're afraid to re-fashion because "you mean I have to cut them up" but which otherwise sit, unworn, in the closet? Yep.

So I put on my big girl panties and got out some of my treasures from my last trip to SBS and made a bracelet ( that I can wear on my next trip there which is coming up!):

Black onyx, another stone the name of which I couldn't remember but Mich in LA reminded me it's a jasper, Bali silver, smokey quartz and :

Silver, black onyx and mother of pearl inlay clasp. 

And I've promised myself that if ( OK when ) I buy these special things, I'm not going to stash them away because they're too precious. Life it too short. Did you know stressed spelled backwards is desserts?

Linking Up At:

  All Thingz Related

Thank You For Coming....And A Winner!

Happy Monday and a big THANK YOU to all who dropped in for a visit to my Holiday Open House. I think we've all had that anxious feeling of "what if I throw a party and nobody comes" so I was very honored and excited that so many of you came to visit. There were 23 wonderful projects linked up and I'm not going to choose a favorite because they were all wonderful. Combine that with the 12 comments that were left and that's 35 names that went into the drawing for the giveaway celebrating reaching 200 Followers. I went low tech for this since it was a combo of linked projects and comments and you got one entry per.
And the winner is............

Congrats Michele! Email me your address so I can get "Lady Jingle Elf's Stocking" on her way .

And please join me next month on August 20th for another Holiday Open House!

Friday, July 16, 2010

"Christmas" ( and More) Open House Link Party!

Welcome, one and all to the first ever linky party at The Answer Is Chocolate! So glad you're here. What better time to have a holiday themed link party than in the middle of Summer? It's never to early to get ready for the holidays, so I thought I'd do this once a month through September, then weekly! Please link up decor, cards, gifts you've made, recipes...anything that goes from Halloween through New Year's! I realize it's early yet so even if it's not for / from this year, link it up because a lot of us are new since last holiday season and who can't use a new inspiring idea?

One of the things I love about the blogging community is how supportive everyone is of each other, especially us newbies. So please please please visit  at least two other links won't you? And leave them some bloggy comment love?

Christmas Open House Link Party Rules:
  • Link to your specific post, not your main blog
  • Describe your linked item  and don't just list your blog name
  • Please grab my button and place in your post on on your sidebar
  • No fruitcake ( just kidding...mostly) 
To celebrate my first link party and reaching the 200 ( now 219!) follower mark, I'm giving away a little something to get us in the spirit:

And what's a stocking without stuffers? So it will come with some goodies that may or may not include chocolate ! To qualify for the giveaway:
  • Link up something to this party
  • Leave a comment 
  • Be or become a follower 
Both the giveaway and party will close at midnight Sunday July 18.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Chain Chain Chain.....Chain of Flowers

Sorry Aretha. Ooops. Miss Franklin.  After I made my first "bib" necklace  and used some chain I'd bought one day just because it was there, I had more chain leftover. OK I had a whole 'nother package of it because I have "Noah's Ark shopping disease" and buy everything in at least twos. Anyway, I decided to try another necklace, not quite as "bibby" but more with a medallion kind of look. I had more organza in my stash and more old tee shirts on hand, so I cut a couple into strips and made rolled rosettes....
I still wanted these to be lighter and softer than a traditional felt backing would allow so I thought Hmmmm...why can't I use tee shirt fabric as my base? So I did. Used fusible webbing stuff to glue two pieces together for the base:
Made layered flowers from organza and then put them and the tee shirt rosettes together on the base in a pattern I liked, hot glued them down then trimmed around to get the shape. I find this easier than cutting out a shaped base and then putting the flowers on but that's me. Sewed my chain on, and didn't even use a jump ring to add the clasp, just opened up one link of the chain and :

Linking Up At:
 Beyond The Picket Fence

504 Main

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Christmas Is Coming and Tuesday & Wednesday Hops!

Here's part of what I'm giving away for my "Christmas Open House" link party on Friday July 16:
 Lady Jingle Elf's Stocking

 Looking forward to seeing  great Holiday goodies! Halloween is OK too! 

Welcome to those stopping in from :
504 Main

Tuesday Tag-Along

Monday, July 12, 2010

Mmmmmmm Milanos!

Check out this new flavor of Pepperidge Farm Milano cookies! There's a contest that ends July 25 where you can enter to win a BUSHEL of these! A. Bushel.

Grand Prize is a “bushel” (case) of irresistibly delectable new Strawberry Milano® cookies!  You could be one of 1,000 winners!  This sweepstakes is open to Milano fans only, click the “Like” button on the Facebook Page before entering.  

 And, you can go here to get a coupon for a $.55 coupon immediately : Get a coupon for 55¢ off Strawberry Milano cookies here

Disclaimer: I am a member of One2One Network through whom I received this widget.

I Tutued!

I was very inspired by Samster Mommy's  Tutu 2010 drive, that I tried my hand at making one last night and I think it turned out OK. No, it's not exactly going to be used by any Bolshoi ballerinas but that wasn't the point anyway :)  I more or less followed the instructions that the Greenbean's Crafterole used, which she modified from Samster Mommy's tutu-orial.  I used a roll of tulle cut in 24 inch lengths ( so when they're doubled over they're 12 inches in length) and tied them to a length of satin ribbon. It was super easy and for a first crack at making a tutu, I think it will work:
Excuse that piece that's flipped up in the really does lay down! 

Samster Mommy Tutu Drive
Linking Up At: 

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Tutu Special Tutu Not Spread The Word

It's been unusually hot in my neck of the woods and I have not felt like doing much making of anything these past several days. I like to try to keep my blog current by posting something daily and I was at one of those "I got nuthin" places today. Then, I checked my reader and saw something on one of the blogs I recently began following, Greenbean's Crafterole ( I just love that name)  that just needs to be blogged about and shared...even if I'm the last person in the blogiverse to have found out about this...I'm guessing I'm not.

Greenbean blogged here about "Tutu Drive 2010" which  is an effort to collect dress up clothes to donate to seriously ill children. She learned about it from another blogger, Samster Mommy who is coordinating this blogland drive.  It's part of the Princess Alexa Foundation  which Samster Mommy tells us was started by a mom to a little girl named Alexa who liked to go everywhere dressed as a princess, but who sadly, lost her battle with her illness in 2008.

We came through the one scare we had with our son when he was 2 and he has been blessed with good health ever since. I cannot imagine anything more devastating than knowing that your child was seriously or terminally ill. I also can't imagine that gathering things like dress up clothes would or even could be high on the list of things you have to do. So this just sounds like the most awesome thing that creative and crafty people could do. Here's what Samster Mommy is doing (and I've linked directly to the post w/ all of the details):

#1 Make/Buy a tutu sometime between now & July 20th & mail it to Samster Mommy. It's needs to be sealed in a ziploc baggie & the baggie should be labeled with the size. She'll gather all the goods together & send them off to Crys in one big box of tutu goodness! And if you can, email her a pic of your creation so she can feature it on the blog.

Please mail all donations to:

Samster Mommy
P.O. Box 84132
Gaithersburg, MD 20883

#2 Please help spread the word! (100 tutus is a lot & if she  doesn't get enough people involvedshe's going to be spending a lot of all-nighters with her tulle stash.) You'll see there are two buttons available on her sidebar for the Tutu Drive, if you have a blog all you have to do is copy the html code below the button & paste it as either a gadget (there's a gadget for html) in your sidebar or just paste it directly into your blog post in "edit html" mode.

I will attempt #1, but #2 was easy to do. So let's help Samster Mommy reach her goal OK?

Samster Mommy Tutu Drive

She's even got a "10 Minute Tutu-torial" right here!

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Apparently, I'm Very Versatile

because Steph S, from "A Day In The Life Of A Grad Student's Wife" has presented me with another "Versatile Blogger" award! Thank you so much Steph!

UPDATE: Jessica, from Caterpillar Family passed this on to  me the next day so I'm cheating a bit and combining it with Steph's. 
Steph has a lovely blog and right now she's got a feature called Stephanie S Button and a picture of my favorite drink in the entire world, a Starbuck's Iced Mocha, so you know we get along fine! And she has an etsy store with some very cool signs.

So now on to the rules of the award and I have to say, I have a dilemma. I have been fortunate to receive a few of these lately and since you have to tell 7 things about yourself and I am just NOT that interesting, I'm going to modify this a bit. I have mentioned that I can relate almost anything to a movie so I'm going to list the 7 movies I've seen at least 7 times!
  1. "The Godfather"
  2. "The Godfather Part Two"
  3. "Steel Magnolias"
  4. "The Color Purple"
  5. "Terms of Endearment"
  6. "Rocky"
  7. "The Hunt For Red October"
How's that for versatile? And now to the 15 bloggers to whom I'm passing this on:
  1. 504 Main (Holly loves mochas too!)
  2. Beyond The Picket Fence
  3. Blommi
  4. Cindy Adkins Whimsical Musings
  5. Decor Chick
  6. Diary of A Chocoholic ('nuff said!)
  7. Envirocraftiness
  8. Flamingo Toes
  9. Less Cake More Frosting
  10. Life By Chocolate
  11. Ma What's For Dinner?
  12. Mom. Undecided
  13. Roller Coaster Life
  14. Sweet European Dreams
  15. These Creative Juices
Please go check out these wonderful blogs! Thanks again Steph!

Friday, July 9, 2010

Woo Hoo! We Interrupt Our Regularly Scheduled Blogging

to say that I reached 200 followers today!!!!!!!!!!!

THANK YOU all of you lovely people who are following me! I will be celebrating this milestone with a giveaway which I'll announce when I have my first ever link party one week from today.

We now return you to your normal programming.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Reading Glass Cases

Welcome to those stopping in from
New Friend Fridays

I'm always on the lookout for things I can do away from home, either in the car or to take with me when I travel. I saw this idea somewhere that of course for the life of me I can't remember , so if anyone has an aha moment, let me know .

I love working with felt because it's so forgiving. So I made these felt reading glass cases which were :
  1. Easy
  2. Inexpensive
  3. Functional
I made a pattern out of some scrap printer paper...a basic rectangle with a chunk cut away:

Fold the left side over to line up with the right and do a blanket stitch with embroidery floss. I started on the bottom left, worked my way around the top and then across the fold area. I used the section I cut away to make a double layer of the top which helps when you stitch across the fold. Sorry no pics...I was doing these in the car over the 4th of July weekend.  When you're done with your stitching, freehand cut random shapes to embellish your case (great way to use scraps) and add whatever misc things you have on hand...I have a stash of misc. buttons.  It was  also a great way to use up extra flowers I had left over from another project:

How Could I NOT Blog About This?

Giveaway: Chocolate Bliss Cookbook & Nielsen-Massey Vanilla. 

Hello? You've seen my blog name? Happy Happy Joy Joy! Over at BLOMMI's site ( which is the combination of blogger and mommy ...genius!) she's hosting a giveaway for this incredible book which yours truly would have absolutely no use for (you didn't really fall for that part did you?) :

 and a bottle of Nielsen&Massey Vanilla which is to bakers what 12 year old scotch is to those who appreciate that stuff.  With Nielsen&Massey Vanilla you can make things like this: 

Yes, I did that to you. If I suffer, you suffer! So head on over to BLOMMI's blog and check out the details how you can win this for me, er um, I mean win this for yourself ! G'head...I linked it for you and everything.


Wednesday, July 7, 2010

What The Heck Wednesday....

I won! That's what the heck! What am I talking about? Jill over at Envirocraftiness has a feature called..."What The Heck Wednesday". In her own words:

It's going to be called "What the heck do I do with this?" Wednesdays.
Aka What the heck Wednesday!

This is where I pull something I want to use up from my stash and you all get to leave comments and let me know what you think I should do with it. 
I love this idea because her blog is focused on crafting and recycling and WTHW  requires using up existing supplies aka "stash busting" and generates creative ideas from followers about what the heck to do with some of the stuff  in her stash.  I commented on one of these about a tray she was trying to decide what to do with and I won the prize. I never win anything so can anyone tell what a treat it was for me to receive her email telling me I won? Lookie what I get: 
 which I can't wait to drool over.  So thanks Jill! For a great recurring feature,  for the prize ( I won..did I mention?)  and reminding us to use what we have (says the person who needs to work on that!)