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Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Tea break

No, I'm not stopping having tea...I'm stopping my busy day to HAVE tea. 
As I've said on numerous occasions, Tuesday is a very busy day for me yet I refuse to give up have a virtual cup of tea with my online friends completely. 
Yes, there is a day or two I miss here and there but who doesn't cancel a date from time to time.

Tomorrow I'll have to show you a couple of other projects I've finished over the last week.
Until then...please stop by Kimmie's and see what my friends are doing today.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Postcard Challenge week 4

In this weeks edition, Thadeus sends Maggie a greeting from China on a postcard with a beautiful old drawing of ancient farmers sowing seeds.

I had started trying to draw a dragon head but it was going quite poorly. It didn't look anything like a Chinese dragon. More Nordic, so I went with a page from a children's book about grains of the world.
I also happened to have a very old postage stamp from China to use. Again, I continued the postmark to give it a bit of authenticity.  I must admit that sometimes get caught up in the minutia of things...


Thadeus explains that he found something in an old book and is searching for answers. He hints at the chance of something wonderful. His hand seems rushed or nervous as he writes. I wonder what is sending him off balance?

Please stop by Darcy's blog  for the list of 


Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Virtual tea

My friend Sandy called and said she wanted to have tea with me today...problem is that she lives about 1200 miles from me. So we decided on having virtual tea.

My tea...

Her tea...

Thanks for having tea with us!

Monday, January 23, 2012

Free motion practice

I got my sewing machine back and my free motion foot. 
As promised, the gal at the sewing place showed me how to use it. She even gave me this practice piece of "quilt sandwich" to take home. 
It is so fun! 
Of course, I'm breaking the "rules" right away by stitching over my previous stitch line but I've never been much for sticking to the rules anyway.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Fridge facelift

So we have this old fridge that just keeps humming along mechanically but cosmetically it was getting really nasty looking. 
I used to keep papers, magnets and comics on it to cover as much as possible.

It was rusting from underneath the finish on the doors. I'm guessing that it was a manufacturing issue since the rest of it isn't rusting at all. 

I sanded all the rust and painted over it with Rustoleum paint.

I decided on dictionary pages to cover the fridge. My thought was...it's got to be better than the way it looked before. 

And in my opinion, it totally is!!  I still need to put a couple coats of sealer on top so I can wipe it down as needed. I picked up the Golden polymer medium I used as glue in the recycle center reuse room for FREE!!  Just two cheap foam brushes were purchased for this facelift. 

Yes, I know we'll eventually have to replace this beast but until then it's definitely a conversation piece in my kitchen!!

Friday, January 20, 2012

Postcard Challenge week 3

The story continues this week from Brazil. 
Maggie questions Thadeus about his vague reference to his research. It has her curious mind working overtime. 

 I used a postcard that my mom brought home from Brazil in 1968.
She traveled around South America for a week and a half visiting Brazil, Columbia and Peru.

The stamp is from the early 1900's. 
I have an old ledger book full of stamps from that era. 
Nothing valuable...just interesting.
Since the stamp had part of a postmark on it I tried to recreate the rest of the mark. I think it turned out pretty well.

I've also figured out how I'm going to put my book together that will hold each of the postcards and complete the story. Unfortunately, I need my sewing machine for that part and it is currently in the shop for a tune-up. I was mildly scolded by the gal at the sewing center when I confessed that my 25 yr old machine had never been serviced. I also ordered a free-motion quilting foot for my machine and the gal told me she'd show me how to use it when I picked up my machine! Horray! New skills....

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Loom knitting

Over that past month or so while I've been working out I've gotten some of the regulars there. I've heard them talking about their Tuesday knitting group so I asked If I could tag along because I seem to be knitting challenged.  
When I got to the coffee shop I saw most of the gals were using these weird circle things...huh, I thought to myself. So I was borrowed a loom and hook and sat down to learn. 
She said I should start with a dishcloth since they are very basic.

It was so stinking easy I couldn't believe it!! This it what it looked like this morning before going to workout. The gal who taught me said she'd show me how to bind it off there.

Look how great it turned out!!

I had some other chunkier yarn in my bag today so I had her watch me start a new one to make sure I remembered how. 
This will be a scarf...eventually.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Postcard Challenge Week 2

Week 2 of the Postcard Challenge and our country is Spain! 
Thadeus is sending his first postcard to Maggie.

I cheated a bit with this card and simply printed it off and glued it down. 
I fell in love with the texture applied to the image. The only thing I added was a little gold ink on the corners.

Keeping the writing style different between these two characters was something that I wondered if I'd be able to accomplish since I have a very distinctive handwriting.  
I was given the hint of writing with my non-dominant hand. 
Tried it...was barely readable. 
I decided to hold my pen in a completely odd way and came up with Thadeus' style while Maggie will remain my own hand. Good thing postcards are small because I was getting a cramp!!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Working tea

I'm attacking some paperwork today at my desk while I have my tea. Not too exciting but one of those necessary evils in life. Hopefully I can be quick about it so I can go be creative this afternoon!

Stop by Kimmies for more interesting Tea Tuesday posts than mine this week. :)

Monday, January 9, 2012

Postcard Challenge week 1

Yesterday, I sat down with my idea book and planned out my story. 
I have my characters names, addresses, professions and a rough outline of how I intend for the book of postcards to come together.  
Of course, this morning I had a few different ideas about the eventual book will unfold but that's ok. 

The first week's country was Austria.  I decided to use a countryside setting for my postcard.  
Pretty simple watercolor painting. Hopefully my skill will improve over time. 

On the back Maggie writes her first note to Thadeus.

I didn't have any stamps from Austria nor did I take the time to download any collage sheets. 
I took a National Wildlife Federation sticker and cut it down to serve as my stamp. 
Works for me.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Year long project

Yesterday, I discovered an awesome challenge.  The Postcard Challenge is the brainchild of Darcy of Art and Sole. I stumbled upon her blog through another...love how that works here in blogland.

I love postcards!! So this challenge spoke to me right away. 
I have a large collection of unsent, vintage postcards not to mention a couple books filled with ones I have swapped on Swapbot and privately. 

For the most part I'll be making my own postcards for correspondence between the two characters I've created but if the country that is choosen for the week happens to be one I have in my vintage collection, I'll be using that instead. 

Can't wait to get started!! 
I'm officially a week behind but I know I'll catch up quickly. 
The first country is Austria...

Monday, January 2, 2012

Channeling my inner nerd

I've started out the year by working on some more miniature terrain. 
Nobody is actually using it for wargames at our house but I love creating it anyway. 

Making something out of nothing but leftover bits.

See how this project started out...
Nothing but junk that was saved from the landfill. Yes, I know some of it could have been sent to the recycle center but this was much more satisfying.

Since we're running out of room to store the terrain that I keep dreaming up..I'm thinking that I'm going to give selling it a try. So, if you know any nerdy people out there...send them my way. :)

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Happy New Year!

I decided on my word for the year...

Drum roll please....  **REDUCE**

This one word will play many roles throughout the year.

  • I'd like to reduce the chemical load in our home even more.
  • Reduce the amount of stuff in our home.
  • I'm going to reduce the amount of purchases we make so that will reduce our monthly bills.
  • Continuing to reduce my waistline and other parts is super high on my list.
  • By making bulk purchases, being aware of packaging and buying local, I will reduce the impact we have on the environment. 
  • I want to reduce the amount of trash we produce even more this year.
  • I'm going to reduce the vast quantity of art supplies I have stashed by being creative more often.

I wish you the best in 2012! 

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