Sunday, December 29, 2013

Ribbon Bookmarks

I learned how do to this ribbon bookmarks

They were simple to make once I decide on the ribbon size. 

I really wanted velvet ribbon for the book marks. I didn't realize how hard it was going to be to find velvet ribbon. I did find some in a some in a sewing store but the color selection was quite limited. To expand my options I bought some trim ribbon. The one ribbon color I couldn't find was purple. At least nothing I really liked. The next thing was the ribbon clamps. The clamps are sized in millimeters verse inches. For the measuring challenged person like me, I had to keep it simple. Luckily for me the spools had both the inch and millimeter sizes on them and I didn't have to convert the measurements myself.

There were a few suppliers on Esty I wanted to buy from but because I waited to long to buy I ended up buying them from Amazon. Cuddos to Amazon prime I had my clamps in two days. Yep that meant the Friday before Christmas. Nothing like waiting till the last minute. 

The side benefit of this project I organized my beads. It sure made things much easier. There is more to get organized but I'm off to a great start. 

Thanks for stopping by.



Saturday, December 7, 2013

Saying Good-bye To My Little Man

Today I said goodbye to my buddy Gus. Of the three ferrets that shared their lives with me he was the sweetest. He was so gentle, sweet and easy going.
He loved going outside. I remember trying to put this harness on him. The second I got the last buckle fastened he was out of it. Once he understood that the harness meant it was time to explore he never fought me again to keep it on.
 He loved digging I had a tub full of shredded paper for him to play in. He would bury himself deep in the bin sometimes and go to sleep. Another of his favorite things to do was to play in his tunnel system. I would hide some food in the tunnels and he run to find his treasures.
One of his favorite places to sleep was his carrying case and the alligator bed. It was funny to watch him get comfy in the bed. It always looked like the alligator was chewing him

 Another of his favorite places to sleep was on my bed. Now I have a super high bed and it was a climb for him but he always found a way up.

Another favorite toy of his was this mouse he loved chasing it and chomping down on it. He would also try carrying it away to a hiding place.
One of his favorite pass time was trying to get to the basement. Watch this funny video showing how determined he was. Believe me he would work that door until it would pop open.
I remember the time he made snow. Take a look you see what I mean. The look on his face of pure joy. I couldn't be mad at him for getting into so much mischief.
I was cleaning up Styrofoam pieces for weeks after that.  This gave me an idea, I gave him a box of dirt to dig into. He loved it. But he came out black and cleaning him up wasn't all that fun for him or me. So we didn't do that again.

Here is another funny video of him.
We had so much fun that night. When he learned how to get out from under the box he won't stay under for long.

This last couple of months have been super tough for my sweet boy. He had a tumor removed back in June. From that operation he got a blood clot that infected his fat tissue. They had to go in and remove a large portion of his skin by his hind legs. He really never recovered from that operation. Once thing led to another. He had been in and out of the vets nearly weekly since September. I couldn't see him suffer any more. Looking at all his photos reminded me of all the fun things we did and his spark he had. I'm so glad I took so many pictures of him and his antics. My last memories of him and his suffering were so over whelming. I glad I had time this afternoon to go over all of his pictures. To realize  he did live a good full life. Take pictures my friends to remind you of your loves after they are gone. They are precious!!!

His in peace my sweet little man. Thanks for bringing such much joy into my life. You will be missed and you were so dearly loved.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

What I learned from Dogs

I'm a dog walker pet-sitter. I love all the dogs I walk each one has their own special character. Here is a few things I've learned from them over the years

People watching is more fun when you are with a dog that loves people watching too. Let’s face it people get creep out if you are staring at them. But with a dog doing the people watching suddenly it’s cute, you even get few hello’s and kisses thrown your way 

Being stubborn and standing your ground eventually you’ll get your way, especially if you’re low to the ground.  If you don’t get your way it fun to watch someone trying to get you to move. 

Show major confidence when walking down the street. You automatically get respect and people don’t mess with you. Oh yeah and having a Rottweiler by your side helps too

 Say hello and be happy to see everyone that comes across your path. You well develop a fan club, you even might get treats, kisses, treats, hellos back, treats, smiles oh and did I say treats

Enjoy everything, smelling the air, rolling in the grass and getting scratched behind the ear. Just feel good and enjoy the simply things in life. Be happy and greet everyone that comes through the door. You feel good and they feel good.

Enjoy daily walks and when you meet a friend along the way it make the day and walk even better

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Friday, October 18, 2013

My First Commissioned Piece

My Aunt saw this piece I made earlier this year and fell in love with it.

She wanted me to make a large piece copy of it. This piece was originally done on 8.5x5. Now I had create it on an 18x24 canvas. Yikes!!! That was a lot of canvas...a lot of canvas. Can I say that again a lot of canvas. Most of my pieces up to that point were small in comparison. The largest one was 11x14. This was just about double in size. Okay I have to say it one more time that was a lot of canvas. It took me about 2 months before I finally sat down to do it.

I held my breath as I gave it to her and she loved it. What a relief. Am I still scared of those big canvases... you bet. But I'm doing another one and I'll post it when it's done.
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Friday, October 11, 2013

Steampunk art

Steampunk has always fascinated me. When a art class turned up incorporated these elements into art I had to jump on it. I learned a lot in this class. Not only in how to add the elements of gears in art to create the look of Steampunk but so many details as well.
The first piece we created was this squirrel

It was a great piece to get our feet wet with adding gears into a piece but also in shading. The goggles on the squirrel is a rubber gasket used in plumbing that I painted on giving the look the depth. The second piece we worked on was this Butterfly

Making the body out of nuts, bolts and jewelry pieces was my favorite part. E600 is now my most favorite glue. Our next piece was this Owl

This piece is why I took the class. The teacher rendition of the owl was so beautiful. When it came time to actually make it I didn't think I would be able to create the eyes. I still can't believe it sometimes when I look at it. Our next piece was the beetle

I took a different approach to this piece. The instruction were more for a beetle with painted gears. I went for a mechanical beetle under construction. Out last piece was this girl

This was the hardest piece for me. I really don't draw faces well to begin with and with paint even worst. I can't tell you how many times I had to repaint her nose. I learned so much with the piece, where to put shadows and highlights and actually painting a face.

 My favorite piece that would be hard to pick between the girl, Owl and butterfly. Each of these pieces taught me something. The play of shadow and highlighting to give depth and dimension to what is being painted. I can leave out the beetle where I went in a different direction from the class.

The teacher is creating a second Steampunk class. Can't wait to see what she has in store for that one.

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Friday, October 4, 2013

My First Original

If you been following my blog you know I take tons of art classes on line. Yep I'm signed up for more than I can really keep up with. But they all looks soooo good {insert the little girl in me whining and a really big grin} Most of the art work I create is following the teachers instructions. One of the classes I signed up for last year, is not really art instruction but more along the lines of self development and then taking the lesson learned and creating a piece of art to represent the concept.

To say I was bit intimidated would be a major understatement. I was stuck, stuck, stuck. Create a piece from my head own head.... ick And then seeing all the beautiful pieces the other ladies were posting... double ick.

Last week I decided I better get a move on, stretch my wings and just go for it. Here is what I created for Paradigm shift and the changes it has on your life when you have one.

The concept for the piece was easy enough. When I have had shifts in my thinking I always feels that my heart gets bigger and my capacity to love gets bigger as well. I know I wanted to use a heart to express my idea. The first two segments were easy enough to conceptulize but the last one was a bit harder. Until I thought of wings then it all came together. Now to post on the class site or not to post.... to post.
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Friday, September 27, 2013

A Summer Wreath

I saw this wreath in a LL Bean catalog.


I fell in love with it but I really didn't want to pay the price. I decided to make something that looked similar. After all I had tons of shells. Armed with coupons from my favorite craft store AC Moore I thought I would be able to do it for about half the price.

 I started with the twig wreath and sprayed it a linen color.
I hot glued the dried grass to the wreath. At first I was trying to glue down a bunch at a time and forcing the curve. But I found it easier to glue smaller bunches slightly fanned out.

 Adding the wheat and lavender in smaller bunches. Finishing it off with the shells. Here is my rendition of the wreath.
I ended up changing the starfish, the ones I had planned on using were to big for the wreath.

Here is what I learned. Don't over buy. Yep, that is what I did, I bought enough dried grass to make 2 of these wreaths. Be careful with the hot glue gun and small items. I burned myself a number of times. Lay out your design before you start gluing and glue in place. I had to move the shells around a bit after I started to glue. Luckily the glue hadn't totally dried yet and I was able to get the shells off. Yep more burns LOL. You ask did I save money? Yes but the saving was minimal, mainly because I over bought on supplies. But it was worth it. The wreath brings a smile to my face every time I come home. I'm sad that it has to come down now that fall is just around the corner.

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Friday, September 20, 2013

End of Summer BBQ

I've been doing an End of Summer BBQ's for a number of years now. It started with a farewell BBQ for my Cousin. She was here in NY doing her Veterinary residency. When she got a permanent position back in California I threw her a sad to see you go BBQ.   About three years ago I started adding a theme to the BBQ's. For that year I created a Farmhouse theme.

I had tons of Sunflowers baskets it was simple and relaxed. Last year I did a beach theme. (Sorry no pics) with seashells, grasses and a body-board to add to the atmosphere. This year was Tuscany.

 I made toparies and grape vines.

 I had so much fun. Here are a few pictures of the day

I learned that deciding on the theme far ahead gave me th speace to really enjoy everything I did. Not to mention waiting for sales and taking advantage of coupons. I was able to work on all the design with so much ease. I enjoyed thinking about ideas, daydreaming on how to set everything up and creating. I learned so much as well, like sticky backed moss doesn't mean it sticks to everything. oh and the hot glue gun. That is a story for another day...

 hmm now to start thinking about a theme for next year....

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Thursday, September 12, 2013

Where did the summer go..

Where did the summer go.... I've been super busy this summer working on the landscaping around the house.  Funny thing was I only wanted to do this small area of the yard.

 Every time I set out to work on that particular area. I would start somewhere else with all intentions of working on my little area in... just... a... minute. Well just a minute was 3 months later. But it is finally done. Super happy with the results. One of the things that lead me to want to work on this sections was the Irises. When I first bought the house there were about 10 of them scattered about in that section of yard. Over the years they were taking over the area. Last year I had pulled out about 50 plants. This year I pulled out about another 100.

I gave them all away via craig's list. I made quite a few people happy. I moved a bunch of the Irises along the fence. And some were left in the original home

In the back I added much needed weed control.

Next year I will really get to see if my vision was realize. If every thing comes back. LOL Here are some after photo. Enjoy!!

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