Thursday, April 30, 2009

Back to brainstorming

Remember the thank you magnets I include in my etsy orders?
Thank you gifts
I need to come up with something equally handmade and charming, but much less time consuming. The previous magnets include the tedious image transfers, at least 2 bakings, sanding to shape the edges...sometimes they are more labor intensive than the item purchased! So I've been brainstorming. Well....trying to brainstorm.

I adore the idea of clay embellished with beads and/or wire. I think they are a fabulous couple! And you KNOW how much I love black & white borders....so I thought a beaded border would be cute.


WRONG!! Not at all like I imagined. First I tried larger seed beads. Size 8/0's I think. They looked goofy. So here are the 11/0's. I don't like them either. Maybe b/c the magnet is too thick?
It reminds me of one of those rolling hand drums or something. I'm not quite sure what exactly it is...but I don't like it.

BUT!! I got to use the letter stamps I got back at xmas! LOL! Now...back to the drawing board.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Landscape brainstorming

Honestly, it's so embarrassing to share pics of our house. I know it's a (HUGE) work in progress...and I know YOU know it's a WIP, but still.

Anyway, rather than destruction we are going for PROduction this time. In the form of a front flower bed. (to hopefully distract from this spring/summer's scraping of the house)


The left side shows Aaron's idea of swirving the bricks out and around the porch. The right side shows my frugal idea of a smaller front-only bed to save money. :) After looking at it, I was won over to Aaron's idea.

I would like to put 2 of those ornamental, spiral trees on either side of the porch. Should they be on the SIDES (hiding the steps)...or in front of the pillars...or sort of diagonally out from each pillar in the rounded part of the bricks???


We are so not landscapers. I'd love some suggestions!
I'm going to put colorful hanging baskets on the porch, as well as maybe a couple large potted plants. But I'm very open to any suggestions/ideas you might have!

Thursday, April 09, 2009

The bling bling tree

A.K.A. the super gaudy, collaborative project with my kids.

bling bling tree

It's a little topiary made to fit a rectangle spot in the girls' shadow box. It's about 6" tall I'd guess. Originally it was not supposed to be so...um...blingy. But the kids wanted to help me decorate it, so each one got a side of the flower pot.




All the bling is courtesy of my generous, talented friend Scott. Thank you, Scott. :)
As if all the swarovski wasn't enough, everything is glittered from bird to flower pot. Because there can never be too much sparkle.

Lydia the non-gamer

I have a little clay project to post about, but I have to take pics later today. But first, a kid video to share. (Hey....I heard that groan...shoosh it!) ;)

The laptop came loaded w/this kiddie game where you practice following directions, in the form of making a duplicate cake. Shape, cake color, frosting color, decoration on top. If the cake is correct, it gets boxed up and put on the truck. If it's wrong, it drops in the trashcan.

Emily is an ace at this game. She loves it! Lydia wanted to try it. But Lydia isn't a "follower" sort of gal. LOL! Just watch!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Real life randomness

Long time no read, huh? There has been a lack of blog worthy activity at our house. Which is good, IMHO. :) No excitement usually means no drama!

Well, no, that's not totally true. Friday afternoon my Mom discovered her check card number had been stolen and some assholes in the Pennsylvania area were on a roadtrip shopping spree at her expense. To the tune of about $3,000! Fortunately, her bank is diligently working w/her to get her money back asap.

Miss Amelia is teething. A few days ago I swore I saw the tiniest white spec of tooth peeping out of her gums, but it was a false alarm. She's had 101+ fever and been a total crab apple, off and on, for DAYS now.

The rest of us are rocking along at normal speed. Sunday I was trying to take a picture of a scar on Emily's chin. (A before photo. We have started a scar treatment medicine on her. More on that later.) Twice I had to run upstairs to check on Amelia. Both times Garrett grabbed the camera and played photographer. Here are the pics he took.
Apparently they were going for lots of wagging tongue action.



You noticed the wounds on Garrett's face? He had his 1st major pavement-eating bike crash a few days ago. Poor kid hit a hard plastic cup in the street and lost control of the bike. Then had to make it 4 blocks home sobbing and bleeding.
Now he's proud of his wounds. I told him they made him more manly. :)

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

I am looking for these bowls

Because Mom was still living here when we moved back in, we decided to use her kitchen things that were already in place. Which includes these cute little face bowls.
In search of

The girls and I eat our malt-o-meal in them almost everyday of the world. Mom said they came from ABC a long time ago. I wanted to buy another set for the day when our households separate again. But I never pursued it.
Then yesterday...insert eye roll....I dropped the pink bowl and broke it. (Luckily Emily wasn't as upset as I thought she'd be. We each have designated colors. Change upsets Miss Monk, Jr.)

So I got to googling them yesterday (they read "Livingware collection" on the bottom) and I can't find them ANYWHERE! Have you ever seen them? I'm afraid it's a lost cause unless I stumble onto some in a thrift store someday.
I thought it wouldn't hurt to enlist the help of my internet friends. You never know! :)

Friday, March 06, 2009

I want to paint the kitchen

Because of it's location, and the expense involved, the kitchen will be the last room to be remodeled. However, it's the only room in the house that doesn't have ugly cracks in the plaster from the house re-leveling. So I want to paint it and "polish the turd" until a remodel day comes. It must be a very inexpensive polishing though. Only paint and curtains.

What color would look nice with the black/white/gray color scheme?

You can see from these pics that the floor and back splash are black & white with dark gray grout. The countertops are a marbled gray laminate.

And all the appliances (except for Mom's fridge) are black.

I really like this color. Do you think it would work?

I am very very decorating challenged. I need help! :) I have two prints from Hollyvision Art. I thought I might decorate based on those, but I'm not so sure. I don't think I want a tropical look kitchen.
I also have two Bettie Page 8x10's. (that b&w link isn't the exact photo I have, but it's from the same photo shoot) I had planned on doing a pinup bathroom theme some day...but who's to say I can't do a pinup kitchen?! Our kitchen is authentic retro after all!

How do I make it prettier in there? What goes w/black & white...except red?

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Snow White doll

Snow White is Emily's favorite princess character. Remember her as punk rock Snow White for Halloween?
Punk rock Snow White
I thought a Snow White clothespin doll would be super fun...and it was! She even had fun herself...frolicking in the spring weather today.
snowwhite1

Sewing is definitely not my thing, so I'm jazzed about how well the dress came out! :) The red spots on her sleeves are a bit big, but that's ok. All part of the dress making learning process.

I debated on what sort of miniature trinket she should have. My first thought was a shiny, red apple...but later decided to go w/something less macabre. So a happy little bluebird it is!
snowwhite_bird

Of course the girls want me to do ALL the princesses, and even a "bad witch", but I don't see that happening. :)

Monday, March 02, 2009

Adorable coffee mug

What is it about coffee mugs? The coffee tastes delish no matter the container...but I still feel this need for cute coffee mugs. They just call to me. I'm sure it's a girl thing. :) When Aaron needed a coffee mug for work, and I asked him what I should look for at the store he replied "something big and not girly looking...black is good". LOL!

Each week the Try Handmade blog entices me with fantastic stuff, but the latest post of pottery work of Emily Dyer is, well, to die for. :) Oh how I would love to have this coffee mug:

It calls to me. Sadly, I can't justify that sort of a splurge for a mug. But I can still admire her artwork and smile. And who knows...maybe some of you can splurge and will do so on her beautiful pottery!
Buy handmade! :)

Friday, February 27, 2009

Her name is Lily

I know this b/c she told me. :) As I was putting the final brush strokes on her face, the heard the name in my mind. Lily. Sounds like I need to open a window and lay off the Mod Podge fumes. Ha!
clothespindoll - Lily

Lily started out much differently. She changed clothes 3 times. I have a limited selection of embroidery floss and fabric...not to mention I'm color coordination challenged...so the outfits are hard for me!

But I live for the accessories. I had no idea how much I enjoy making miniatures.
flower basket
I wanted her to hold a caged bird. I even tried to engineer a tiny wire birdcage, but after 2 failed attempts I gave up. I can do flowers! I'm sure noone is surprised to see that glittery flowers grow in Lily's world. :)

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Sisters


Sisters
Originally uploaded by ~ChristieToo
They make my heart feel like it will burst...when they are not driving me to drink. :)

Friday, February 20, 2009

1st clothespin doll

I always enjoy my crafty time, but sometimes I just love it. This week I've been working on my 1st clothespin doll. I was originally inspired by Sweet Imaginations and BeezTings dolls on Flickr. Emily & I sat admiring their flickr photos for probably an hour! She was so smitten about them, I knew I had to try making some.

Of course I wanted to use clay instead of wood! :) After trying several different ideas, I re-engineered a spring clothespin to look more like the peg clothespins. (For the challenge, and also b/c I didn't want to load up all 3 girls and drive to Hobby Lobby.) Here she is, standing in the window sill watching today's sunset.
1stclothespindoll

She was so much fun! Her head and hair is all polymer clay. The base is also. I need to work on my face painting skills. Her rosy cheeks turned into rosacea! Her felt dress is dripping with glitter. Girlfriend even has white glittery highlights in her hair! (Which I would totally do if they were a realistic option!)
And her teeny purse....how fun is that?!
tinypinkpurse

I can't wait to make some more! I'm sure my ADD will kick in after the 2nd or 3rd doll...but my brain is bubbling with ideas for at least a dozen more! She will go upstairs to the girls' shadow box to keep the polka dot bird company.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Emily writes her name

So, I know this is only interesting to some of us...but Miss Emily is learning to write her name. They are growing up so fast!
Emily writes her name

There is a lot of background noise. Welcome to my world. :)

Friday, February 13, 2009

If I wrote vday cards

They would be like this.



This is good stuff! :) Courtesy of my buddy, Aunt CharChar, who never ceases to crack me up!
Happy Valentine's to you!

A little birdie

I did not plan it, but this little love birdie arrived just in time for V-day.
love bird
I made her to sit in a shadow box in the girls' room. It has several different 'holes' to fill, and I just happen to have ideas for clay creations to sit in all of them. :)

I went glitter crazy. The base is covered in it, the hearts are thick with it, and even the bird's polka dots are glittered. You can never have too much glitter, I say.
love bird base
The whole thing is just under 4" tall.

In family news:
Garrett is doing splendidly in school, and making new friends (and reacquainting w/old ones). Him going to school outside the home is the best thing to happen. For both of us.
The 2 big girls are trying to be the death of me. I'm serious. I think they are plotting.
Miss Amelia is growing so fast! She loves her solid foods. Baby food, vanilla wafers, Mom's morning malt-o-meal, and anything else we let her try. She laughs and jabbers all the time. She's still the sweetest punkin ever.
Aaron is working 60-75 hrs a week. And 10-15 hrs a week at his own business (fabricating plane parts out of our garage). So we never see him.
And I'm trying to get over a bladder infection w/out going to the dr. (no insurance now) Anyone have any spare Bactrim they want to send me? :) Only joking.

And now I will adjorn to the kitchen and put on my chef hat. I hope you have a tweet V-day weekend! ;)

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Parents just don't understand

And I thought my girls were hard to understand! :)

Monday, January 26, 2009

Practicing being a big girl

Just sharing a little Amelia cuteness. She'll be 5 months old in 3 days. Wow!! Time is flying by!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Happy Vday to me!

No sweets for me this year please. This Valentine's Day I'm getting a treadmill! I'm so excited! Just before we moved, my FIL loaned me their treadmill and I loved it. I really despise exercise but the treadmill and I got along famously. I started feeling better and my fat jeans started feeling looser. But only a couple short weeks later we moved and the treadmill stayed in TX. And I've been sitting on my pudgy butt ever since. :)

I refuse to reward myself with new, larger, more comfortable fitting jeans. It's time to stop sitting and complaining. It's time to do something about it. I'm jazzed! By February 14th (arrival day) I will be like Forest Gump.....I'll be RUNNIN'!! :) Thank you HSN for running a sale w/payments!!

Friday, January 16, 2009

Screw you, youtube!

Normally I try to abstain from blatant negativity on the blog...but today is an exception. Youtube can kiss.my.ass.

They have "muted" my silver foil video because it's using copyrighted music from Led Zeppelin in the background. Are they serious?!? Of all the MTV videos, tv shows, cartoons, exercise videos, etc. on Youtube....they target my tutorial video with Zeppelin quietly playing in the background?? Good grief!!!

And the real kick in the pants? They offer me the option to use their nifty tool, Audio Swap, to change out the background audio with an approved song. But you now what? It will totally erase the original audio. Which includes my narration of the tutorial. I might as well just leave the video completely muted!

Ugh....I am so ticked off. I apologize for my public spewing of negativity. I needed to vent. It's especially frustrating b/c ALL my videos include background music. So eventually youtube can mute all my videos. My spewing doesn't do any good other than make me feel better for a moment.

The only solution is to delete the original and upload an edited version. Which required digging out the old laptop's hard drive and retrieving old date. *sigh* Maybe tomorrow.......or the next day.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Sculpey the Slug

If you have 4 1/2 minutes to spare you should watch this claymation movie. So darn cute! It's a guaranteed smile. :)

Thursday, January 01, 2009

Life is a highway

And we drove it back to Oklahoma...

(Edited to add..I originally started this post December 18th, and here I am trying to finish it January 1st, 2009.)

You are not gonna believe this. Well, those of you who have known me long enough will believe this.....we have moved.....AGAIN. :) We are back in our beloved old house in Oklahoma. Aaron's job was downsized in south Texas and we have returned to Oklahoma. Mom is still living here, and we are all cohabiting for the time being. There is never a lack of adventure in our family!

Here is a picture of my favorite ornament on the shortest lived xmas tree ever. We put up the tree one weekend and found out a few days later that Aaron lost his job. The tree was up less than a week. Lovely! (The smore snowman was from my sweet friend, Gina, a few years ago.)

Here's a pic of a WIP I started this a couple days before the layoff. My plan was to make several of these for xmas gifts...didn't happen!!! The neighbor friends...family...all were supposed to receive cute snowmen ornaments for xmas. *sigh* I had to bake the prototype and pack him away before he was finished. The idea was good, I think. An old Kreb's ornament given a new life. Well...next year he'll be given a new life. :)

Anyway. Here it is January 1st. We are busy getting settled into the old/new house again. Aaron is busy busy w/projects around the house. Garrett and Mom have both received new closets in their rooms. The girls' room has been painted 2 shades of purple. The kitchen has received a set of new cabinets.
I've been cleaning non-stop since we got here (December 15th). This place requires a lot more cleaning than the Texas house. My Monk tendencies are going to be the death of me here. :)

Overall things are going well. We are very happy to be back in our house. We missed our house. Here we are in our other house in Texas...just days before the move.

Belated Happy Holidays to you all!

I have had so little computer time this past month that I don't even miss it or crave it anymore. My google reader has 360+ new blog entries and my 2 email inboxes are overflowing...so bear with me if I owe you correspondence. Mmkay? :)