Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Inspiration Comes Close To Home

I love reading blogs, websites and magazines for inspiration.  I enjoy reading other people's stories on their creative process and looking at their beautiful works of art and all the details and different supplies they used.  I also find it inspiring to hear how others have over come obstacles in their lives and have used that experience to go on to do things they never dreamed of.  Those stories and individuals touch my heart and I always end up feeling so happy and so proud of them for having such inner strength.

I happen to know someone who has such a story that brings me inspiration.  That person is my daughter, Beth.

I will briefly give details of the back story.  In middle school Beth excelled in math and science and saw herself going to college for engineering.  She missed a large amount of school her last year due to an extended illness that was never diagnosed and had a hard time keeping on track with her studies. On to high school.  At this point she was struggling with the math and science but was excelling in her back up favorites, history and English.  She became sick again in the spring of her junior year and ended up in and out of the hospital numerous times.  She had two major surgeries and developed a virus that affected her immune system.  She did not return to school that year.  She started school her senior year but did end up missing some of that year also.  Needless to say, her grades were not where she wanted them, she was unable to take as many SAT or ACT tests as she would have liked, and the list goes on.  She applied to numerous colleges and did have some to chose from.  She did not get in to her top choice, but with the help of a very understanding admissions advisor who called and spoke to me often, she got accepted into Oregon and was happy with that.  She must have known someone who had a similar situation, maybe herself?, but she got Beth off the wait list and accepted.  Funny thing, we were supposed to meet her when we went to orientation, but she had left to go to grad school. She never mentioned that.  That still makes me wonder....guardian angel?

During the summer Beth volunteered for someone who was running for congress in our district.  She really enjoyed it.  She hated to leave when it was time to go back to school and was happy when he won the seat.

Beth was happy at Oregon but knew that the University of Washington in Seattle had a better political science, philosophy and history department. Knowing that it isn't an easy school to get into she gave it her all and waited.  It was a great day when she heard that she had been accepted!  They also have a great pre-law program which is something she is very interested in.

She has almost completed her junior year.  The past two summers she has come home and worked.
Not this year. See, this girl had a plan.  When she was interning last summer she really hoped the person she was working for would win.  Why?  So she could possibly go to Washington DC and intern for him there.  She made good friends in the office where they were working and they remember her and how hard she worked.  Guess what, she got a call and she is going to Washington DC to intern for the summer!  Now that is what I call inspiring! Every time I think about it I get chills! I could not be any prouder of this kid! Talk about wanting something and planning and making it work so you get it!  I am so impressed! (Don't get me wrong, she's a normal, drive me crazy, yes we fight, clean up your room, don't use that tone on me, normal, young adult.  But when they do something like this you kinda gotta let yourself go crazy for a while, so thanks for bearing with me!).

So, yes, I am basking in the inspiration my daughter has brought into my life.  I am excited for the adventure that lies ahead of her.  She will be doing administrative/office duties, attending briefings and meetings and giving tours of the Capital. She is going to get a job working around her rotations - Ford Theatre would be her first choice. What an experience!  I am so happy and so proud of  her!  I am hoping we can go visit while she is there and see all there!

Thank you, Beth, for all the inspiration you bring to my life!



Monday, April 29, 2013

Inspirational quotes

I love quotes! Anything that inspires me; whether it comes from a book, a movie, a TV show, or even a piece of scrapbook paper! I find them everywhere. I like to write down the ones I like and refer back to them later. Sometimes I use them on special projects. And sometimes I just go back and read them when I need positive words of wisdom and encouragement. I was at work the other day and I found a new piece of paper by Canvas Corp that is covered in short, sweet life quotes. I took the liberty of writing down some of them to share with you. It might be that perfect little saying for your next card or layout!

1. Live a good life

2. Life can either be accepted or changed

3. Laugh and the world laughs with you

4. Be open to love

5. Life is about creating yourself

6. Live with a purpose

7. Laugh often, long, and loud

8. Love beyond words

9. Live every moment

10. Laugh a little each day

11. All you need is love

12. Laugh your heart out

13. If you get a chance in life, take it

14. If it changes your life, let it

15. Life is a journey, not a race

16. Live with no regrets

17. Love conquers all

18. It's never too late to live happily ever after

19. Laugh as much as you breath, and love as long as you live

20. Live in the moment, not in the past

21. Do what you love and do it often

22. Live the life you've imagined

23. To love, and be loved is everything

24. Life is about finding yourself

25. Life well spent is long

    Have a great week!!   xoxo Mandy

Friday, April 26, 2013

Bringing that EVOO in to the kitchen

When I lived in San Diego, I had the boldest shade of yellow on my kitchen walls.  It was appropriately named Extra Virgin Olive Oil, and it was yellow with just enough green in it to make it unusual while still being a versatile shade of yellow overall.  It looks good with brown, tan, black, grey, and almost every color of the rainbow.  I was obsessed.

When I found out that I had to move for work, meaning I had to paint over my happy yellow walls, I was very sad about it.  So, I drove up to my new city with the can of EVOO in my backseat, waiting to find its next application and adventure.

Six months later, I got tired of driving around that old can of paint - yes, I said six months.  The weird thing is that I cleaned trash and everything else out of my car, I just never removed the paint can! - and so it was finally time to put it to use and bring some cheer to my new home!

Enter old hand-me-down furniture.  Which, I love by the way.  I got this fabulous, sturdy oak dining set for free from a family friend.  The only problem with it was the way it was painted.  This Before image is actually the already-stripped down furniture.  I will not frighten you with the details of the paint stripping process because if I learned anything from that step, it was to NEVER DO IT AGAIN!  It was days of hard work and this is the best I could get - even now under the yellow paint, there is visible texture in some areas where the old paint wouldn't sand off.

Anyway, after one layer of primer, two light layers of paint, and about 15 hours of work, the dining set is complete, and I have a bit of my old home in my new home!  I say 15 hours of work, but because I had help, the job was completed over about only 8 hours.  Chairs on Saturday, table on Sunday, and it was a fun excuse to enjoy the outdoors when I really had more pressing chores to do indoors ;)

xo Allison

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Vintage Summer

Now... the weather here in Texas is off and on, hot and cold, but that hasn't stopped me from thinking about summer time. With only two more weeks of school - OHHHH MYYY GOSHHHH!! (mini-panic-attack) - It feels as summer is just around the corner.
 At night, I dream of sunshine, being tan, and of beaches. (Although there is a chance that this will be the first summer in a long time that there will be no beach for me, probably more like lakes and rivers or something more... Texan.)
Summer has me thinking of all kinds of beachy vintage and crafty inspirations like vintage swimsuits, floppy hats, mermaids, shells, coral, anchors etc.

I think I'll share some of my summertime inspirations...

Swimsuits. I love looking at vintage pictures of ladies swimwear... I think it would have been so lovely to live during the 40's and 50's just for the abundance of glamorous modest style swimwear. Everyone looked classy! I would love to see more ladies and young women wearing once pieces instead of strings connected to inches of material. because unfortunately, everyone has probably seen something at the beach or a public pool that you just can't un-see, no matter how much you wish you could.... Anyway, vintage one piece suits are just amazing, flattering, classy, sexy AND making a comeback! 
07.01.10 {vintage swimwear: one-piece}
  (see more pics at this cute blog>>here<<)
07.01.10 {vintage swimwear: one-piece}
My love for these suits have lead me to splurge a bit on modern one-piece suits that have that vintage inspired look....

Both of these Suits are from Carmen Marc Valvo... I first purchased the black one in 2010 from Victoria's Secret. It has been a staple suit ever since. I've worn it to the beach, hot tub, pool party, etc  and it still looks brand new (so don't be afraid to splurge on quality!). I love the suit because I am self conscious about my stomach and I would much rather hide it under layers of ruched material. They say every girl needs that little black dress, well... the same is true for a classy vintage inspired swimsuit! I just recently purchased the pink suit (for 1/2 the original price on ebay) because.... two is better than one and I highly doubt I will wear a bikini ever again. I cant wait to throw on a floppy hat and get out on the lake, river, or hopefully the beach.

Mermaids. Who cares if they aren't real. They are just beautiful.... here are some crafty things I have been inspired to create with mermaids. 2 book covers and a brooch.

And for those of us who have pretended to be mermaids at one time or another...Coolest. Job. Ever. I wish I would have known that I could've grow up to be one and get paid for it!

So whats your summer inspiration?

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Garden Update :)

Ok, so, CONFESSION!!!!! I had made a big time fail, so I have been reluctant to share the garden that me and the boys did with everyone. I felt so embarrassed to post the disaster I did, BUT, I stepped back and took another look and decided, 'hey I didn't kill them all, only some' and, we do have some growing plants and there are MORE seeds. So, this morning I went out and took pics and decided to share our garden growth so far.

Some of the pots I just planted new seeds in and some are starters. (Ones that I had planned on buying that way from the beginning)
 You remember, this is what we first started with. The boys planting in this little "greenhouse"

 These are cucumbers
 These are sunflowers that Ryry and I planted about a week ago.
 Not sure what this guy is, buy I am thinking it is lettuce. It just sprouted up one day with the watermelon that I replanted in a disposable pot.
 This is watermelon. I just love how they sprout and open up!
These are some of the little seedlings that I replanted (way to early-which is part of my epic fail) in the disposable pots
 Yellow pot are newly planted seeds. Red pot is Zucchini. (which I almost killed, [SORRY GENA], by not transplanting it soon enough) Green pot is Banana Peppers and Basil.
 This is what our little greenhouse looks like now after I reeked havoc on it!
Another sunflower with water droplets. I just loved the way that this looked with the drops resting on it.

Well, I am just glad to say it wasn't a total loss and, most importantly, we still have stuff growing. I still have so much to learn about container gardening, and it is now where near as easy as gardening in ground like I am used to. But, I am determined to make it work!

See you all back here next Wednesday

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

We Take A Short Break From The Canvas Project...

As I continued working on my canvas project, changing my mind numerous times on how to build up the canvas, searching for needed supplies to complete the decided upon plan and selecting a font for the poem to be printed in, an occasion arose where I needed a card. Now, I have boxes of cards that I could have gone through and selected an appropriate one, but that would just not do.  This person falls in the category of special that a card should be created for her specifically in mind.  And to be honest, I was more than happy to take a short break from the canvas and create a card that I knew would be fancier and more meaningful than the ones I had already made up.

I am so in love with The French Country line from Graphic 45.  I love the colors and the sheets that have the smaller rectangles that you can cut and use for card fronts.  I used paper from this line for the background of the card, the checked strip at the bottom of the card that I edge punched, and I cut out the square that has the girl in the garden.  Isn't that image beautiful?!  I used Spica pens on the red flowers, the white flowers, the gold bushes and the writing, postmark and swirls at the top of the image.  I love using those pens - they add so much.  I mounted the photo on a piece of bundled sage colored Core'dinations Distress cardstock, which I embossed with a Stampin' Up folder, and lightly sanded.
Before I adhered everything in its place I ironed some Maya Road pleated satin trim and placed it under the checkered piece so it would show through the edge cut.
It seems like more and more people carry their card decorating over onto the inside of the card.  I don't always, and when I do, it tends to be just a little something.  In this inside I placed vertically another piece of checkered edged paper, a square and a postage stamp from the paper line.  I then chose a SRM sticker from their Happy Birthday sticker sheet for the final touch - and my card is ready to be sent.
I love making cards - it is such a small way to let someone know you are thinking of them and hopefully bring a smile to their face and some warmth to their heart.
Now, back to the canvas project.....

Friday, April 19, 2013

The Snuggie Experiment: Part II

What could be better than a big, cuddly snuggie?  Two big cuddly snuggies?

Try, two big cuddly snuggies that zip together to make a convertible two-person snuggie!

It is so over-the-top cheesy that it actually works!

All it takes is two individual snuggies, and one sleeping bag 100" zipper.  Sew one side of the zipper to each of the snuggies.  This way, you can have a two-person snuggie to cuddle with on the couch, or un-zip it to have two individual snuggies if you choose to sit on different sides of the room.

I cannot wait to spend the summer with the doors and windows open at night, letting the cool breeze blow in as I am snuggly in my snuggie!

xo Allison

Thursday, April 18, 2013

A Recipe for Disaster

I have been really busy during these last couple weeks of school! In order to stay creative, I have needed to multitask. A lot of my creativity and energy is going into group projects and essays at school. Despite school stress I still have other obligations that I need to fulfill...

Yesterday I needed to bake and frost 60+ cupcakes in between classes for a little mother-daughter party at church that evening. I woke up early. (only getting 3 hours of sleep) Being in a major time crunch, it was really silly for me to want to try a new recipe for frosting that I have never tried before. But I didn't wan't to just make plain old cupcakes. For the first two dozen I made chocolate cupcakes with a Reese's cup in the center, topped with purple buttercream frosting! Since I had made them before they turned out just fine. ...I decided to be creative in the limited amount of time I had. I decided to create multicolored cupcakes with a jello mix whipped frosting for the next 4 dozen.... (Here is where the disaster part came in.) I was rushing. The colored cupcakes turned out just as I had expected. But the jello frosting is something that I just wasted my time on. I followed the recipe, minus using a stand mixer, and it just wouldn't thicken. It was like Jello soup... At that point I didn't have time to fool around with it, but I still did.
Finally I just gave up. I added more water and decided that maybe it might just turn to jello so i could eat it later and wouldn't have to dump it.
I had no choice, I had to rush and buy frosting on my way to the party and frost them at the church... and they looked so ugly. Even though the event was a success and no one complained about the cupcakes, I felt defeated.

Baking for me is a way to express my creativity. I love trying new recipes. And I take pride in creating beautiful looking and yummy tasting deserts. Next time I am rushed to make something I won't get fancy. I stressed myself out beyond imaginable to the point my body ached.... Sharing this moment makes me feel sort of pathetic.

Today I planned to share with you all a lovely new Jello Mix Frosting recipe I found and then share pictures of my cupcake creations. But instead I created a new recipe....

Recipe For Disaster

1 Cup- Something New
1/2 Cup- Lack of Sleep
1/2 Cup - Limited Time
2 Hand-fulls - Outside Stress
1 Heaping Tablespoon - Perfectionism

For best results: Do not mix them together...


Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Flower Power

Good Morning! Good Morning! Good Morning!

So, do any of you have favorite places to go to just soak up its beauty??? I know I do, the most typical if you are in San Diego, the beach and Balboa park, BUT one of my other favorite places to go to is actually the mall and NOT to go shopping either :) Grossmont, which is an outdoor mall, has some of the prettiest flower gardens and cutest little statues too. They change it out seasonally and also when things start to die, so there is always something beautiful to look at. Right now they have their Poppies growing and they are so vivid and bright and beautiful!

Look at the color it is just so Pow in your face! (lol aka bright and beautiful) I love the contrast of the red and yellow.

I know a lot of people are scared of bees, but I find them so fascinating and intriguing everything that they do!
The white ones bring so much airy-ness to all the other really bold colored poppies and there aren't quite as many of them as the rest.
Here is just one of the many statues. This one is of a little boy sitting on top helping a little girl up to the top with him. Just so sweet. 

Well that is it for today and I hope you all find beauty where ever you go!

Til next Wednesday,

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

A Poem From A Forthcoming Project

Happy Tuesday!  So, I have found a bit of my creativity.  It has decided to make its reappearance in very limited doses, but I am not complaining.  It is coming back in a very interesting way.

I was walking around my favorite, local scrapbooking store and came across a sheet of paper I had always liked and never bought.  The paper made me think of some wood embellishments I had that would go perfectly.  My mind then went to a favorite poem, that when posted on the paper, and the paper mounted on a canvas, would make for a project that I could keep for myself and love.

So today I am going to share with you that poem, as it might not be readable when the project is completed.

I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings
By Maya Angelou

The free bird leaps
on the back of the wind
and floats downstream
till the current ends
and dips his wings
in the orange sun rays
and dares to claim the sky.

But a bird that stalks
down his narrow cage
can seldom see through
his bars of rage
his winds are clipped and
his feet are tied
so he opens his throat to sing.

The caged bird sings
with fearful trill
of the things unknown
bur longed for still
and is tune is heard
on the distant hillfor the caged bird
sings of freedom

The free bird thinks of another breeze
an the trade winds soft through the sighing trees
and the fat worms waiting on a dawn-bright lawn
and he names the sky his own.

But a cages bird stands on the grave of dreams
his shadow shouts on a nightmare scream
his wings are clipped and his feet are tied
so he opens his throat to sing

The caged bird sings
with a fearful trill
of things unknown
but longed for still
and his tune is heard
on the distant hill
for the caged bird
sings of freedom.

I know that poems are interpreted differently by each person, and I know parts of this sound quite dark.  I am hoping you see and feel the hope I feel when I read this and how sometimes it takes things being not quite perfect in life to help one realize their gifts and talents. (that uplifting thought brought to you courtesy of my wonderful therapist whom I spent one and one half hours with this morning....)

I'll keep working on the canvas and share next Tuesday.



Monday, April 15, 2013

Turn Something Old into Something New #2

Growing up I was always under the impression that buying things at the thrift store and the Salvation Army was for poor people. Well, now that I am a poor struggling college student, I shop there too!! Lol! Just kidding. But in all seriousness, I feel like shopping at those place have a bad connotation, and I’m here to break that. Shopping at the Good Will, and similar stores not only saves you a TON of money, but it can also be like a treasure hunt. You have to sift through the bad to find that diamond in the ruff, but once you do, it makes your whole experience worth it.

Living here in Southern California, most of the antique stores tend to be “Antique Boutiques” and can be very pricey. But places like good will, and Salvation Army are just the opposite. My latest find was this little Beauty. It’s a paper towel holder and spice rack all in one. The thing to remember when on the hunt is to keep an open mind and an open imagination. You see a crusty old spice rack with years of build up from being hung on the wall of someone’s kitchen. I see a new way to organize my glitter and twine.

I took my find up the register and purchased it for only $3.00!! That’s unheard of! Where could I find a quality piece of maple for that cheap these days? Then I took it home and put in a little elbow grease. I scrubbed the whole thing with Fantastic and a scrub brush. I got all the years of grime and build up off in very little time. Then I took some furniture polished and wiped it down until it shined just like new again. The spice shelves on it held all my bottles of glitter perfectly. It’s my dream to eventually convert all my glitter into vintage salt and pepper shakers. And I think this spice rack is the perfect way to display them.

Then I took my twine and began winding it around the paper towel dowel. Since it’s made to spin, whenever I want twine, ill just unroll the amount I need. It will NEVER tangle and always be there right when I need it. Obviously I haven’t finished winding all my twine I own, but you get the picture. Everything is where I can see it, and if I don’t say so myself, it looks pretty darn cute once it's cleaned up and displaying all my crafty treasures!

I hope you feel inspired!

Wishing all the best week ever; take good care and ill see you next Monday!



Friday, April 12, 2013

The Snuggie Experiment: Part I

Yes, I know people love to make fun of Snuggies.  But, let's face it, they are genius!  Your arms can stay under the blanket while you are using your remote AND stuffing your face with Girl Scout cookies that you have had tucked away in the freezer for six weeks?  Lazy people, rejoice!

The best part is that the project to create your very own Snuggie is supper easy, and quick!  In under one hour, I had a completed Snuggie, made with love and a fabric I got to choose myself.

The supplies are basic, too.  Just 2 2/3 - 3 yards of fabric, and scissors.  If you choose to use fleece like I did, you can even get away without using a sewing machine if you don't have one, since fleece doesn't fray, therefore it doesn't need any hemming.

Here is the diagram of how the fabric should be cut, after the selvage has been trimmed off.  If you are about 5'8" or less, I would recommend 2 and 2/3 yard if you don't want too much extra at the end.  It might be cuddly to pool around your feet on the couch, but it is also a hassle to drag around if you stand up to walk to the fridge or something.  I used a full 3 yard piece, and I am considering hacking off the bottom.

The two squares from the bottom fold in half, with one seam along the edge.  These make up the sleeves.  Unless you happen to cut perfect squares, fold the rectangle "hamburger style" not "hot dog style" to sew the edge.

I folded my main blanket piece in half when it was time to cut the arm holes.  I made a paper template of the 6x9 inch oval, and pinned it so that I cut both holes at the same time.

The trickiest part of the process was pinning the sleeves to the arm holes with right-sides together, and that wasn't too bad at all.  A few cuts, 4 seams, and you are done!

But Allison, why is this "The Snuggie Experiment: Part I"?  What about Part II, you ask?  Part II is coming next Friday, and here is a clue: I bought not one, but two fabrics...

xo Allison

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Dutch, Dutch Baby!

Is it Thursday already? Sheesh, well.... hello Thursday!
Let me quickly share with you what the lovely Texas "springtime" has been like. On Tuesday it was sunny and 85 degrees. Yesterday it was 45 degrees and rained all day. I break out my shorts and put away the heavy coats and BAM!! hahaha you weren't putting those coats away were you? I think Mother Nature likes to play sick twisted little games. Wherever you are, I hope your springtime is a little more... consistent.

Okay, so I previously mentioned my infatuation with French Toast.... 
but German Pancakes ARE the next best thing!

When made with a dutch oven (cast iron skillet) it is called a dutch baby. I don't know why. it just is. Maybe because it grows to 10x It's size.  But the Dutch Baby a.k.a. German Pancake can also be created in any cake pan.

So what makes a German Pancake different than any other pancake?
  • It calls for a lot more eggs.
  • It has a kiesh-y texture.
  • you don't need to flip it.
  • its very filling. 
  • Instead of single servings, you just make one giant one.
  • you cook it in the oven, not on the stove.
  • It generally draws a crowd around the oven to watch it cook... (who crowds around regular old pancakes?)
  • It grows, it REALLY grows! 
  • you don't use regular syrup...  as a matter of fact, you might just forget your maple syrup all together after you taste this other stuff! 
Find the Recipe for German Pancakes >>>HERE!!<<<

For the topping you MUST have this special sauce.
It's much easier than making a buttermilk sauce that most German Pancake recipes call for, plus I think it tastes much much better. This sauce is Divine! 
 Just please don't use maple syrup! Blehhhh!!

1 C. Heavy Whipping Cream
1/2 C. Brown Sugar.
1/2. TSP. Corn Starch.

Its easy: Mix it all together. Stirring constantly bring to a boil. Remove from heat, sauce will thicken.  (*This sauce must be eaten warm. If you put any leftover in the fridge heat it up before use.)

I have completely given up maple syrup all together. This special sauce works with pancakes, french toast, even mixed into oat meal or malt-o-meal! Once you taste it, you will understand! 

 My MIL recently gave us about 4 dozen eggs straight from the family coop....  can you guess what I am having for Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner tomorrow... maybe all week?
I bet you cant.


Wednesday, April 10, 2013

This and That

Well I had such a wonderful week with my family. We went all over San Diego and had a BLAST!!!! Gramma got a HUGE hotel room so we decided to stay at her "house" all week long. We swam, ate, walked, looked at animals, ate,  drove, ate, shopped...lots of eating lol.

Take a look at some of the adventures we took Gramma and Elisha on. (I didn't get too many, I either forgot my phone or it was dead.  But, Gramma took a bunch and I will post some of those at a later time)
 Gramma on a Scooter!! She made Elisha hold the drinks so she could go for a ride. Gotta love it. :)
Skipping rocks at Lake Murray
 Phoenix and Gramma cruising
 Ocean Beach Sunset
 Old Town covered wagon photo op

I also have finally finished my little table I rescued. I am so happy with it. I have yet to get it all set up, but it is FINALLY finished.

Remember, this is what it looked like. Red and cackle and peel-y. I sanded thru about 4 layers of different colored paints to the bare wood. The sprayed a base coat, gave a light sanding, then sprayed the green, sanded it down and sprayed another coat. I then sanded all around and heavier around the edged to give it a nice distress look. I am so happy with it and can not wait to get it all set up.

And to finally catch up....Here are some Easter pics :)

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

You Can't Force Creativity

It is Tuesday and that means it is my day to share some creativeness with you.  Don't get me wrong, I love being part of this blog - it is truly one of the highlights of my life, I just don't have any thing I created to share with you.

Maybe you can relate.  When things aren't going right, people are bringing you down, tension and/or stress are high, creativity seems to take a hike.  All those things just do not breed creativity, and no matter what you do, you just cannot force it.  The creative mind does not work that way. (at least mine doesn't.)

So, I am sharing with you my lesson that sometimes you just need to sit back and wait.  Wait for things to get to the point where creativity creeps back in.  Although things might not be all the way better, creativity can help deal with life's problems and give your mind an escape from the stress - if even for a little while.  And that will make you feel alive and well once again.

Until Next Tuesday -



Monday, April 8, 2013

10 things I like about going to grandmas

1. Daffodils grow wild on the side of the road in the spring 

2.  listening to the whistle of the midnight train 

3. Barns... Every good farm has one, red ones are my favorite 

4. Two lane long open highways

5. Sunday dinners. Dinner is at lunch time and supper is at dinner time back here.

6. Hunting for antiques. I've been very successful thus far

7. Cows. They're everywhere!!

8. Watching the price is right, and bidding on the showcase showdown.

9. Looking at old family photos and hearing all the stories behind them.

10. Eating homemade rolls, and homemade pies, and homemade everything :)

Unfortunately I have taken so many amazing photos back here, but the grandparents don't have cable, let alone the Internet. So I can't upload any of them for this week. I'll be heading home on Wednesday  so I'll have to put them up next week. Hope everyone is doing well!!


Friday, April 5, 2013

Words to Live By

Everyone has a favorite quote or two that they like to keep tucked away and pull out when they need some inspiration.  You may even have a mantra that you refer to on a daily basis.  Maybe its a Bible verse, a song lyric, or just something funny you heard once, but these phrases that we make our own often provide comfort.  The one I turn to the most is "everything happens for a reason" because even when things turn sour, I know that I am either meant to learn a lesson, or this event is setting me up for something better at a later time.  

I wanted to turn my favorite words of wisdom into art so that I could surround myself with them at home and at work.  So, as so many people are doing these days, I have started collaging, and it is so much fun!  
Whatever you are, be a good one. - Abraham Lincoln
Collaged onto a metal tray from the dollar store.

The key to a successful collage is texture, texture, texture.  Here is an example of how I squeeze as much texture as possible into a small space!  I just keep stacking ribbons, paper, and glitter until I run out of pieces that I want to add... It is a great place to use those end remnants of ribbon that are too small to bow!  

I also consider mixing and matching lettering as adding different textures.  In this tray, for example, I use three different lettering formats: stickers, a label maker, and my own handwriting in pen. 

You are you.  Now, isn't that pleasant? - Dr. Seuss
Collaged onto an oval artist's canvas.
Do not disturb - Ok, not a quote, but a fun collage to hang on my bedroom door!
Collaged onto a chipboard shape.

Therapeutic to create, therapeutic to enjoy as decor.  And bonus - it allows you to use up those scraps of paper and ribbon that you love too much to trash!  Here's to hoping I will get to finish a few more this weekend...

xo Allison