Thursday, August 27, 2009

Week #4 Challenge

This is my entry for this week's challenge over at Dixie Pieces. Our "sense" for this week was the Taste of Summer.
So how could I NOT do a page on our scrumptious Lobster dinner in Maine this past June. Fresh out of the ocean and onto our plates.
We had to include painting on our layout this week, so the edges of my background are painted along with my chipboard "Joy". I also whitewashed the green cardstock in the center of the layout.
If you look, you will also see that all the little flowers are paint dots of "Stickles - Pearls".
So there is my take on this week's challenge! Four weeks down & 1 to go!!!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Pink Pig Giveaway Over At A Soft Place To Land

Check this out - there's a giveaway for a $50 gift card to Pink Pig. Cute, cute stuff........are you a country pig or a city pig????
I found out about this over at A Soft Place To Land - another awesome blog that I love to peruse on a daily basis!!!!
Be sure to check them both out today!!!!

Monday, August 24, 2009


I had a little time today so I just roamed the aisles at Lowes. Do you know that in the 1/2 hour or so I was there I was asked by no less than 5 employees if I need help???? Now that's customer service.
So my adventures up & down the aisles had me leave the store with this.....a plank of wood & 7 chip samples of vinyl siding.........hmmmmmm.........................the brain is a buzzin with creative ideas!!!
This past Friday night we had a goodbye Chinese dinner w/ champagne for Christine! She works at Masterpiece Memories. She graduated this past May from Western Michigan University and is now headed off to Phoenix, AR to study for her Masters in Psychology - Eating Disorders. We sent her off in true MM fashion, food, fun & fotos (photos). I did NOT take this group shot obviously - do you think one of the 3 guys' there taking pics could get at least one good shot?????
I didn't take this one either......... But I did take this one of Quyen & Christine - what is up with the pouty, kissy lips pics??????

Friday, August 21, 2009

Experimenting With Canvas

During my time off this summer I have been perusing the internet a lot looking for inspiration. I've also gotten hooked on a show on HGTV called "Color Splash" with David Bromstad (if you go to the link you can kind of see the canvas in the back left corner of the photo). I don't watch it everyday, but I watch it as often as I can. As for the internet, Donna Downey's blog has also been helpful in inspiring me.
I used to do a lot of painting on wood - folk art type painting. My sister Pam & I would take classes together & we have a lot of treasures to show for those classes. Then our interests turned to other creative areas & the paints kind of got left behind.....
Well - I've dug them out again. A few weeks ago on Color Splash I saw this episode where David was "painting" a canvas to put in the dining room he was remodeling. All he was doing was dripping the paint down the canvas from the top & controlling the thickness & effects with a spray bottle filled with water!! Now I can do that! Also I've been reading Donna & looking at her paintings - they are so cool!
Ever since we returned from Maine I've had an idea in my head but until I saw this show & read of few more of Donna's postings I didn't have a complete idea. Our friend there treated us to a complete Maine Lobster Dinner in her home! It was absolutely "joyful" as Pam would put it! Most of the colors in her cottage are light & summery so that is why I chose orange, yellow & a hint of green. The 3 pictures are of her home, her dog- Parker, & the bench in front of her aunt's & mom's boarding house. The plaque on the bench is in memory of Pam's dad who passed away in June of 2006. The number "8" is just like the house number on the post on her front porch.
I took the wire wrapping idea from Donna & added the beads myself to kind of jazz it up! Now - I just hope Pam doesn't look at my blog before she returns home for the school year. If you do Pam - well.......SURPRISE!!!!
I sure hope she likes it!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Sensational Summer Week #3 - Textures of Summer

This week's challenge at the Dixie Pieces Bummer End of Summer Sensesational Contest is the sense of touch and/or texture. I think one of the most popular textures for most everyone is the sand and surf.
Well - I took a little twist on this and decided it was "Surf & Turf" and I used Libbi's favorite "feels" of summer. She loves, lOvEs, LOVES her little blue pool & laying & rolling in the cool green grass in the backyard.
We had to use 3 main colors - lt. blue, gray & maroon.

This combination was a challenge for me, the blue & gray I got, but adding the maroon in took a little searching. But as I was cleaning my creative space yesterday I came across a few things that I totally forgot I had & I think they worked really well with this page.

We also had to include doodling - hand drawn doodling. So, having come fresh off an online doodling class, I had some ideas about that. I made my letters for my title & then I doodled on the tag and around the pictures a little bit.

I had fun with this challenge as I've been wanting to use these pictures of Libbi for quite a while!!!

Thanks for stopping by!

Monday, August 17, 2009

A Rainy Monday in Michigan

I woke up this morning to no power! Ugh - hate when that happens. At least I woke up in time to get my youngest up in time for work. There is nothing worse than waking up late - it seems as though your whole day is screwed up!!
Thankfully I can still use the bathroom & shower even when we don't have power. I remember the days when we were growing up & we lived in the country & were dependent on a well with a pump. If we lost power, we lost the pump, which meant we lost the ability to use the bathroom!
We had a very warm weekend, but the rain moved in over night & I think it's here to stay for awhile. That's okay - we desperately need it! Plus it will be a good excuse to work in my craft area & clean today! It's so hard to concetrate on that when it's sunny & nice out. I just want to be outside playing.
Friday night was a night of celebration for us as our oldest son, Chad, graduated from the Automotive Academy!!! He has been in college for 4 1/2 years, the last year in this academy. He finally did it!!! We are so proud of him!

He has a very strong lead on a job at a local car dealership, but there is a small snag that they are trying to work out. Pray for him that it can be taken care of & that he gets the job. To him, this is his "dream job"!So I'm hoping that when I get home from summer school I will have my power back on so I can see what I'm doing downstairs to clean! Also - so that everything in my refrigerator doesn't spoil either.

Today is also my sister Pam's 30th wedding anniversary! Happy anniversary Jeff & Pam! I hope & pray that God will blesss you with many more years together!!!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

My Challenge Is Done For Week #2 - Dixie Pieces

Okay, I am NOT a cutter.....a hand cutter, cut things out by hand kinda gal. NOT when there is the Slice, The Cricut and The Pazzle...oh and don't forget your Coluzzle.
This week's challenge was to use the 3 primary colors - Blue/Green/White in our layouts and to include hand cutting! The theme was the Sights of Summer.
So, I started a layout Monday night. I painstakenly cut out little fish, and layered them, cut out little pictures and layered them. I painted, I inked, I totally goofed it up when I tried to doodle my title! I absolutely hated it & there was no fixing it at that point!!!!! Maybe later, but NOT right now!
So, I got out new papers and changed the size & format of the pictures I wanted to use. I dug deep into my drawers and found my deckle edged scissors, my pinking edged scissors & a few others. Then I dug a little deeper and found letters to trace so I could hand cut them for my title! It was sooooooooooooooo hard to do, especially since all I did at work today was cut title after title after tile and a crown or 2 for customers!
But I continued forward and finished my page for the Dixie Pieces Bummer It's The End Of Summer contest. There's some pretty cool entries already this week. I always try not to look at them or at least not to close until I've completed my project. I don't want to find myself comparing my work to theirs & putting myself into a tizzy.

So 2 weeks down......3 to go!!!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Dixie Pieces Week #2 Challenge

We got our assignments this past Saturday for this weeks SENSE-sational Summer Bummer contest. This week's sense is "The Sights of Summer". Well - even though we had a stormy, wet weekend, I was sure to have my camera on hand to collect some shots for my layout. We went to Holland on Saturday. Our initial intent was to spend the day on the beach soaking up the rays until Shaun's team bus returned from O'Hare to the college. We woke up to major thunderstorms! Bummer......BUT we definitely need to rain in Michigan. We were afraid that Shaun's flight would get delayed, but by the time they landed it was clear & they arrived home around 7pm Saturday night!

The weather didn't stop Steve & I from packing our picnic lunch and heading off to Holland anyways. We just took our time in the morning, especially after Steve got a phone call at 6am for a service call to fix a flat tire on a truck on I-94. Thankfully he was able to change it between storms! When he got home I was in the process of brewing a fresh pot of coffee & baking giant blueberry muffins.

After our breakfast, we packed up the cooler, camera & snacks & took off. It was a constant downpour all the way to Holland. Earlier in the week Steve had run into the mom of our best man! We haven't seen Jeff in probably 3 years - running into him on the beach in Florida. We made a surprise visit on Jeff & his wife, Vicky. We knew they would be home because they were supposed to be having a garage sale. The weather wasn't cooperating, but we were able to spend about 1 1/2 hours visiting. It was really nice catching up again on our lives!

By the time we left the sun had come out & the humidity had appeared = phew! So we headed to the beach. It was very windy, but we found a spot that was protected and enjoyed our picnic lunch. After lunch we headed out for a walk on the pier. Were the waves ever crashing in!!! I got some fantastic shots!
This is SO cool!!
Sunday was again very, very hot & humid. We haven't had any of that this summer except for 1 week in June. I haven't missed it! So friends of ours who live on a local lake called us after church & asked if we would like to come over for an early dinner & a swim before we all went to the local concert in an area park? They didn't have to ask us twice.
After dinner & my swim, I was sitting on the deck visiting with my friend Pat. She quietly pointed to the flower basket behind me where this little hummingbird was zipping from flower to flower slurping nectar!He was buzzing so fast that I had to focus on the flower & then move my camera onto him because my camera wouldn't focus on him!!! I was SO excited to get this shot.
So these are a few sneek peaks as to what will appear on my layout challenge this week.
Now off to swelter some more & maybe sweat off a few pounds in this lovely Michigan heat!!!
Enjoy your Monday.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

A New Song...

It's been 9 months since my surgery & finding out that I had....HAD.....cancer. Hard to believe, but thankful for God's healing hand.
In that time I have not been able to least not in church with the praise team. I have struggled with my voice, getting hoarse & even losing it from time to time. I was told by my doctor that it could take up to a year for it to feel "normal" again.
Well, last night, for the 1st time since last November, I gave it a try again. I sang with the praise team at practice. WOW - what an awesome feeling! The music & words in the songs spoke so clearly in my heart. But by the end of the night, I was pretty hoarse again. I drank plenty of water through the night & did NOT strain my voice to try & reach notes that I knew were too high.
I just want to praise God for all that He has given me. He is the ultimate healer and I know that He has walked along side of me through this journey.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Dixie Pieces Challenge Layout for Week #1

This summer I have been trying to find my creative mojo again, so I've been doing a lot of surfing & found this contest on a website called Dixie Pieces
Each week for the next 5 weeks, we will be given a challenge to complete & post by the end of the following week. The name of the contest is "Big Bummer - The End of Summer SENSE-ational Contest". The challenges will be in regards to the different scents of summer. This week we were to do a layout in the 3 colors (orange-gold-green) & include what "smells" remind you of summer.
One of my favorite smells in the summer is the beach. Whether it is the shoreline of an ocean or the shoreline of Lake Michigan - they both have their own distinctive scent!

Monday, August 3, 2009

Picture To Prove He's In Ireland...

I can't help it ...... I am so excited for my son & this adventure to Ireland, so you'll just have to bear with me until it's over!!! This picture was posted on the school's website yesterday in the link to the team's Ireland trip. Each day different team members are to post in the journal & then whoever, team members and/or parents-family on the trip, can send in pics to the school's website for posting also.
This picture is taken at the Cliff's of Moher in Galway, Ireland. Shaun is on the right with one of his coaches behind him & 2 of his team mates along side of him. He & 2 other team members were responsible for yesterday's journal entry.....
The boys' have been quite humorous in their telling of the adventures they are experiencing. I especially like the fact that my son made "swiss cheese" out of the opponents in their game on Friday night.
Along with following my son in Ireland, I have also been working on a few creative projects. I continue to work on my Maine trip, but I've also recently joined a month long challenge on
It's a contest with weekly challenges regarding the "Scents" of summer. So I've got this weeks assignment & I have been runnng ideas through my head & have started sketching my layout. I'll be sure to post it by the week's end as it is due by Friday night! I've never entered a contest like this, but I found it through another blog & thought to myself what do I have to lose? So, I'm challenging myself to stick to this challenge.