More About the Girls

Friday, October 28, 2011


I know what you're thinking, "no posts for 2+ weeks & now 2 in day!"
Well, you may not want to read this one, as it will be a rather sad post. Something that I wouldn't usually write about, but I am feeling the need to get it out...
me, Jason & Karter at our 20yr HS reunion
I attended the funeral today of that rather handsome man in the photo above. He's the same age as me & died in an accident last weekend. A stupid, shouldn't have happened accident!
 We weren't super close, but as my friend Kelly said at the funeral when I commented on how I couldn't even remember when I FIRST met Jason, she said, "I just remember him always being there." That is so true! I have snippets of memories from school with Jason & all our friends, but most memorable was the few hours we spent together during & after our 20th reunion. He joined a group of us girls (as usual - surrounded by women!) after the reunion for a few more drinks on the town. He was making us all laugh through the night.

Jason in Iraq 2009
He had a very adventurous life traveling the world & even working as a contractor in war-time Iraq & Bosnia with their governments trying to rebuild. He pictured a better world & wanted to be involved in making it so. (He left for Iraq shortly after our reunion - we were all terribly worried for him.)
Jason in Turkey 2010
The service today was sad, beautiful & full of melancholy as many friends & family shared stories. There was a wonderful slide show of him playing in the background as well as some of his favorite music.
Listening to the stories from people he had met in recent years made me wish so much that we had kept in touch better after the reunion. I ran into him a few times - even just a few weeks ago at the store - & we always promised to get together, catch up & encourage each other to get the local gym! But we never did. He was a handsome, friendly, caring, humorous & genuine man who always had a smile for you & made you feel good when you were around him. I will miss him.

These stories also made me sad for the relationships I have now.
Friends that I hardly see because we are all so "busy."  Old friends that I have known since childhood that live so close, but we still only manage to see each other 1-2x a year. It made me sad that so much time has slipped by & it scared me too.
For what might the future hold for them, me, anyone?
I realized that our lives can change in an instant, as it did for Jason & his family. 
I don't want to attend any more funerals of friends & feel regret for time passing us by without sharing more of it together. 
Life is simply too short.

A quote from the pastor of the service, something he was told during a sad time in his life:
"Love leaves more than Death takes away."

We need more LOVE in our lives.
Thanks for listening,


I sat down the other day to write up a little post, (since I haven't posted in almost 2 weeks & that post was more of a blog promo - which I WON!!!) & the words just wouldn't come. Ever have that problem? I couldn't even find the motivation to search for photos to post! Nuts! At least I am here now, right?!?!

It's been a busy couple of weeks though! I don't know if I mentioned this in another post, but I was on the PTO committee at my daughter's school for their 1st Fall Festival, 5K & Fun Run. It was hard to pull together, but very rewarding in the end. And no, I don't have any photos because I was sitting behind a table for 3 hours checking people in for the runs! Now THAT was crazy! We really had no idea of how many runners (kids too) would sign-up the day OF the race! But we do know what not to do next year!

Of course, in my spare time (HA), I was working on more projects for the craft fair. Here's just a few:
Hello Card

"Hello Darling" on inside

Thank You Card
Chunkie Angel Block
I have become addicted to these Chunkie Blocks!! They are not the exact size of an ATB (Artist Trading Block) because the guy at Home Depot couldn't cut them that small. they are really fun to play with & you can do lots of 3D elements or stay flat!
This is a photo of one of my BIL's! Priceless!
Santa Chunkie!
Lastly, my sister & I found this FABULOUS photo to use in her Art Group project (I promise to post photos over the weekend from the past couple of "sessions"! I can't believe I haven't posted ANY! So sorry!) & I put her on a gift card tin...
"No Peeking!"
In between that, we had our second Encaustics class. It was so much fun & went by way too fast! I will post pictures of that as well!

So that's it for now. I would LOVE to hear what you think of the projects too! So please leave me a comment when you have a minute!
Mom & Kim have been busy too! Mom is making some fun Scrap-a-Teeny purses & Kim has altered some cabinet & drawer fronts with some fabulous scrap images! I will get some photos this weekend when we get together!

Wish us luck...Maggie is going to a friends house today for her FIRST sleep-over!! I sure hope I don't have to go pick her up at 11pm!

Have a wonderful Friday everyone & thanks for your patience with me on my delayed posts!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Have you heard of Whippy Cake?

Have you heard of Whippy Cake? It's not something to's this amazing collection of hair & clothing flower accessories all handmade by this ADORABLE girl named Becki Crosby (& her team)!
This is her...
Becki Crosby
I met her briefly at The Creative Connection & wished I could have her style! Of course, her style included her FAB flowers that she so cleverly added velcro to so that you can attach them to her headbands as well as a clip to place in your hair or onto clothing!! 
Here are just a couple from the NEW Rococo Collection:
The Moth Ball

The Hun Bun
There's so much more, but those 2 are my favorites!
I bought these at TCC:
They are just adorable & very versatile! You have to check them ALL out!

That's it for now!
I'll try to pop in later & show you some more of what I've been working on for the show in November. I have so many ideas floating around in my head that I can't sleep anymore!!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Crafty Wednesday!

I just wanted to hop on really quick & give you a peek at what I've been working on for the last couple of days as well as some picts of the work I did in our ENCAUSTICS class tonight! (I apologize for the lighting quality on the pics - much better light during the day in my studio, but I just couldn't WAIT to SHARE!!)

Here's a couple of fun decor pieces & some cards I've done for the craft fair in November...
Angel Christmas Decoration

StEaMpUnK wall hanging - did the digital collage myself!! Getting better at PSE!
Christmas cards...some are in sets too!
Just a fun Bird Card
Bird note cards
Song Bird Card
Flower card
(The bird & flower paper used above is from this FANTASTIC paper pad from DCWV featuring artist Donna Estabrooks! I am totally in love with it & it just makes me WANT to PAINT!! Soon, VERY soon!!)
Now for the ENCAUSTICS class! We (mom & I) decided to treat Kim to this class at our local community college for her birthday! It was soooooo much fun & the teacher, Camille Scott, was FABULOUS!! We went into the class not knowing a lot about encaustics - pretty much had only seen work where the artist had covered their painting or collage in clearish wax. This was a whole different thing!!!
Just a few of what I made tonight
Camille showed us how to play the wax around on the paper with the iron & stylus tool. She had some amazing landscapes that were all done in WAX!! It was totally cool & we can't wait to go back next week for the 2nd class when she's going to teach how to emboss, use alcohol inks with the wax & more!!
What do you see?

for the Magpie!

On foam core!

kinda Christmasie?

What do you see here?

Trees made with lots of was in the stylus - 3 dimensional!
That's it for tonight! Can't wait to share some more with you (& hopefully better photos!!)

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

If you DON'T call yourself an ARTIST, you MUST read this!!

I just finished reading the most recent post from Jen Swift's blog, Art as Usual & you simply MUST read it if you have ever struggled with whether to call yourself an "Artist" or a "Crafter."
I know that I have struggled with this recently & ever since returning from TCC (the Creative Connection), I have added the word ARTIST to my vocabulary more & more. Because I do believe that I AM AN ARTIST! I create things with my hands & use my imagination to do so!
So, if you want a little inspiration & a little something to kick start your day of creating art, scroll on down to read Jen's advice on WHY you should consider yourself an ARTIST!!

Why You Should Believe You are an Artist: Even if You Don't Make Art

When I was 17 I had a boyfriend who said, "You're not a real artist. Real artists are like (so and so friend of his) who makes stuff up out of his head. You just copy something you see." And yes, I did. I would paint from nature, or do my pastel drawings outside, on site. So there really was nothing I could say about that. The boyfriend meant a lot to me so I believed him. Sad as that now seems. I decided that no, I wasn't an artist. I just liked to draw and make pretty things.

Last week I was teaching a class and I heard the women saying that same thing. They sculpted with metal clay, they did jewelry and were taking mixed media classes. But they called themselves crafters. They knew real artists, and that was not what they were. I felt so sad. Then something someone else said triggered the same thought and I had to share it with you.

So here is today's message. YOU ARE AN ARTIST!!! You may call yourself a crafter, and a craft is maybe what you feel you are creating. Maybe you don't feel you're an artist because you may be contrasting yourself with someone who is a fine artist. You may work with Sculpey instead of clay. You may love to sew, instead of creating paintings. But you are still an artist. An artist is not defined by the medium or the product, but by so many other little things. You see, I've come to realize over the years that to be an artist does not have to mean that you sell your work. It does not mean that you work with fine art materials and shop at fine art supply stores, or create art that is ultra realistic, it does not even have to mean you can draw. We put up such barriers to our own happiness. We want to be artists, we hope to one day be artists, all the while not understanding that we already are artists.

I believe that the term "artist" is not a job title but a personality type. You are an artist for example, if you love beauty. If you seek to surround yourself with it, and glory in it. You're an artist if you appreciate design. If you notice the light on the leaves outside your window at a particular time of day. If you feel energized and alive after learning some new way to create. If you HAVE to create. If you are unhappy if you don't create. 

You may recognize all or only a few of these descriptions in your own personality. BUT if you do, then I believe really and truly in my heart of hearts that you are already an artist. I'll agree that artist's are born not made. But that does not mean that you ooze talent your whole life. It may not even mean that you work with art materials. It is your personality. It is in your blood. You couldn't stop yourself from creating if you tried. Odds are that if you look at your life you'll see that you find a way to be creative in all sorts of areas of your life. It may be in what you choose do as volunteer work. Or how you decorate your home. Or how you dress or cook or craft. But to create, to make beautiful or interesting everything you touch, that is something a true artist does. Not because they went to school for it, but because they simply have to.

It really wouldn't be a big deal what we call ourselves except that we make judgements about ourselves based upon that. You would sign up for that art retreat but you're sure that only real artists go and you would stick out. Or you would spend the money for that amazing sounding class but you really can't justify spending any more money on something that is really just a  hobby. You would take a room in the house for yourself and your art, but that would seem to much like carving out your own little studio space and you don't feel it's justified. Do you see how you demean yourself? That is why it's dangerous to deny your Artist self. God has made you unique, He has put that creator element of Himself in you, and you refuse to acknowledge it. He may have caused that opportunity to go to that art retreat to open itself up to you, purely for your own joy. But you refuse to embrace the gift that it is because you can't acknowledge that you are already an artist and have been since the day you were born.

So please, think about this. And next time you feel the urge to claim not to be an artist-Don't. If you don't know what kind of artist you are, because you do a little of everything, say you're a mixed media artist. But if you say you're not an artist, you'll believe it. We listen to what we tell ourselves, as do others. So say it to yourself, if no one else. "I am an artist." And believe it- You are. 
That's all for now. We are all super busy cranking out new stuff for our Craft Fair in November at Castle View High in Castle Rock, CO! I promise to post some pictures along the way! We are also taking an encaustics class tomorrow night! I can't wait to play with wax!!!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Enjoying Fall in Colorado - Heavy on the Picts!

I am sooooo enjoying the Fall weather here in Colorado! This is my favorite time of year - when the leaves change & the air turns crisp! It's that time when I pull out what little Halloween & Fall decor I have to decorate the house (when I find the time!). It is also one of the best times to get out & take pictures!!!

On Saturday, we three headed over to a Historic park here in Denver - Four Mile, where they were having a Pumpkin Harvest Festival. It was great fun to ride the old wagons & wander around the "pioneer" town with volunteers dressed up in costumes of the era.
Maggie with one of the scarecrows
They had an area where you could make a scarecrow ($15!) but the hubster didn't want all that hay in his car! (Definitely doing one next year!) So we headed off to find the horses & the wagon rides...
Covered Wagon
 We road in the covered wagon & even just riding for the 1/2 mile circle around the park, I just couldn't imagine crossing the US in something like this! Imagine how LONG it must have taken them to get from city to city!! Not to mention the dust, weather, dangers & the discomfort inside on hard benches!! I think I'm a fan of the Industrial Age when all the new-fangled stuff was being invented!! :D
Nibbling on the fence!
An old, very well preserved Stage Coach
And of course, I had to get a few artsy-fartsy shots too!
Just some more general ones around the park...
The old homestead, turned Stage stop - built in 1859

I can't pass by such beautiful door without a photo!
 We held off on the pumpkins because if I buy them this early, the squirrels eat them before we get a chance to carve them!!
Then on Sunday, we (the 3 of us plus Grandma!) jumped into the van & headed west to see some of the fall color. Colorado is so pretty this time of year & hundreds of people head up into the mountains & stop wherever they can to take pictures! It's a little insane! We stopped a few times, but really just enjoyed the drive!
We found a little picnic spot along the way where Maggie was kind enough to pose for me! She's such a HAM!!
Just chillin'

The 3 of us
That's it for today!
I plan on getting some projects up for you tomorrow that I just finished & a few cards from Kim that will be up on Etsy today (hopefully!). 
We have decided to do a Holiday craft fair this year at my nephew's high school. It will be our first one, so if you have any pointers, PLEASE SHARE!! So now we are all going to be super busy making some new things for that!!
The hubby likes to take my pic a little too close for comfort!! Makes me feel old!