Monday, August 21, 2017

Friendship Rocks Cape Cod Style

One of the things on my list to do in Cape Code this past week was bring home round rocks. I was more thinking of a few for my Japanese Rock garden. It hadn't occurred to me to bring a couple home painted & ready to be hidden until after I got there. Since most of our rocks here are shale (sorry, it's the Geology degree talking) and rocks in Massachusets are granite, I opted to run with a base coat of clear Modge Podge, then the painted design, then another coat of clear, so you would at least see the granite base. Little people might notice that the actual rocks are pretty and I'm releasing these today around town as I run errands for work. Of course I had to theme them all Cape Coddy...because they are traveling rocks you see. I imagine the lobster will get left at Aldi's. I mean, it makes sense right?

It's a kick ass game around these parts. My Facebook Feed alternates about people bitching about statues, other people bitching about people bitching about statues, the I hate Trumpers, the I hate the People Who Don't Hate Trumpers, and lots and lots of little people with happy faces showing their pretty new found treasures. Since I personally like my goverment a little farther away and something I don't have to worry about & these days it's inches from your face...I need those rock photos!

It's pretty popular here in Steuben County probably partially in part because we have a lot of tourists and some of these rocks are traveling, making the game interesting. I also figure the rest of the rock artists just need a break from the news and need to get painty. The hiding them outside where it's pretty and the news isn't on is an extra bonus. Throw in a few kids doing happy rock dances? Icing on the cake. I'm in!

On a side note, who else thinks Michaels should organize a friendship rock painting party for Trump and his peeps? Maybe a couple of soothing Art Therapy hours of painting little American flags and writing inspirational messages will pay off and everything will run a little more smoothly. The Secret Service won't allow any rock slinging or writing things like YOU ARE FIRED.

Well, I'm off to hide rocks and hide from the news! Happy Tuesday!

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Pumpkin Harvest Mug for THE CUTTING CAFE

I spotted my first tree turning red on the way to Cape Code last week. I'm not quite ready for fall yet, but it's around the corner. Some kids are already back to school, in fact! I did get in the mood to work with some fall stuff along with this new mug file that Regina has over at THE CUTTING CAFE called the 3D Cup Template and Cutting File. It's a nice little holder for a gift card, perhaps some carmels, or tea? My birthday season is coming...most everyone in the Pratt Inc. Clan has fall birthdays.

I really decorated big time around the handle. Even used vintage pumpkins! Part of this was because I cut two of the cup files so the inside of my mug could be green and the double paper was super thick. So thick that I used staples to hold it all together. No really, I did.

See? And yes, there might be some stray glitter in the cup bottom. I had to glitter up the lip of the mug because I could. Gold paint would have been involved under normal circumstances, but since I waited until kinda late for this post...and things were wet almost at the time of the gold paint.

Happy Monday to you & enjoy this cutting file!

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Steuben County Rocks

Recently, I learned of a group in my area who was painting rocks and scattering them around our county in hopes to spread joy and happiness. I caught the rock painting bug and urged Lexi to bring her paints along camping and bought a bottle of modge podge at the store before we left. As the back of the rock asks you to post in the Facebook Group Steuben County Rocks, I've seen some of these rocks travel out of our area. I figured it wouldn't be that bad of an idea to paint them here in Cape Cod and scatter them here.

I wouldn't have thought it was addicting until I got caught hiding some and was fleeced of my rocks by two cutie pies who biked off with their treasure. Later I found one of their rocks that was all blue and sparkly and it made me happy.

It seems by the advertisements I've been getting from Michaels that this rock painting thing is a big deal and isn't just regional. It's a good deal for the paint peeps. Our local stores keep getting wiped out! I've been decorating mine with some paint pens too which kinda helps being able to write on a rough surface. I then add a coat of modge podge after so they can survive a rainstorm.

It's been fun placing these and hoping that the person or little person who finds them is super excited!
I'm back to paper tonight I think, but I'm sure I'll have to make another batch of rocks soon!

Sunday, August 13, 2017

A Collection of Oddities

I'm off this week camping in Cape Cod, but I wanted to pop in for a bit and show you some of the recent finds that I've left behind. I've got big plans for those candle sticks. I might have to get all Christmassy with them. Why not, that month will be upon us before we know it! That clock has been hanging around forever, but I finally found a new insert for it at the ReStore, so it might be painted soon! I'm still trying to figure the perfect paint combo, but certainly, something that shows off all the little details. Maybe white and gray? That wooden chair back also has a plan that involves attaching it to a little wooden display box. I randomly set it up on top and thought wow, that looks awesome! I plan on spending the week painting rocks and making backgrounds for scrapbook pages. Oh, and recharging! I can't wait to spend a week looking at cedar shakes already installed on houses, checking out the beaches and spotting a whale!

I'll pop back in with some painted rocks...It's sweeping my county and you'll want to hear all about it!

Thursday, August 10, 2017

So Very Blessed with Good Food Layout

Sometimes when I'm trying to use up a paper packet, I make an extra page or two without any idea of what photos I will put on them. Of course they may sit for a while until I look through and think, wow, this is perfect for those photos I want to scrap!

See, I pretty much scrap in order or work on recent events so I start with the photo or photos first and see what I might have that works. If I don't have any accumulated backgrounds to use, I make one. In this case, I lucked out!

I also lucked out because my subject (Aunt Connie teaching chopsticks to Lexi) had a birthday yesterday so not only do I get to show you this page, but I get to wish her a happy birthday! What a nice time out and about when we were in Lake George, NY. We really liked this place to eat. Sometimes you are on vacation and the food is sub par, especially in this area where it's very seasonal. Check out that flower cluster! I went digging for a few things that matched and was pretty pleased.

Check out how many letters I used! I had a sticker sheet with the word blessed on it that I started with to use up and then it morphed from there! I was happy at how cool it turned out!

Happy Thursday and a happy belated birthday to Aunt Connie!

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

A Little Knobby

Great Grandpa Ham made this shelf for me ages and ages ago. In fact, it still has a little Christmas tag at the back of it. This doesn't mean it can't of course get a new look for a new room, which is why I added a fresh coat of paint to the bottom and gave it all new knobs.

New knobs being a relative term here since I think a couple of these door knobs are older than me. I countersunk a couple of them so got to use forstner bits. I also used bolts and the little tiny set screws that came with the knobs to hold them in place. The air nailer got put into use too to add that little scallopy do-dad at the very top of the shelf. My favorite knob of course is that crystal one. Yum!

Ready to be installed here at this house! I got thinking that Grandpa must have made this shelf back in 1998 making it around 18 years old....Super cool!

Monday, August 7, 2017

A Walk in the Park with Reindeer Fur

I forgot how magical it can be to help someone. Last week was a long one full of extra volunteers followed up by painting a house on Saturday with a group. I can honestly say Friday night did not feel magical. Both of my guys here are fighting a cold and between the one who is coughing in my ear all night and the other one who had to start school all sickish, it's been a bit rough. Add that in with one person calling me Friday afternoon for help as he and his Mrs. are living in their garage as something blew up in his house. The connection was spotty so I never did hear what blew up, but the end of the story was that the house wasn't safe to live in and he was OK for now, but worried about winter due to the living in the garage bit. Those are the kinds of stories that keep you up at night or require a shot or two of tequila to forget for a bit.

I am a firm believer in circumstances and just because you have made all the right choices, it doesn't mean you won't find yourself in a bit of a pickle and need help. This was the case with Bonnie who lives in the house above. A little over ten years ago, medical bills (due to lack of insurance) forced her and her husband to move into this much smaller place. She said she thought that what they had would cover them, but then it turned out it didn't and they had to fix the cancer. I agreed. It's important to fix the cancer. She is determined to age in place and hopefully will get her hubby back soon who's currently in rehab. This why the crew of Corning Area Young Professionals popped in to help keep her house up by painting it.

Since the guy who organized his group is an early riser, I lucked out and the project started at 8. By 7:45 I was carrying five gallon buckets of paint out of the van and throwing plastic over bushes. By 8, he was pulling up in his pick up truck with a ladder and a variety of tools and his wife. The wife part was important as we had to paint A LOT of shutters and she is a wiz with spray paint. By noon, we were getting called into the house for pizza and pie. Real pie. Not the kind with a little grocery sticker on it.

We didn't finish her house. I didn't think we would. The homeowner had a blast talking to all the kids and they were only scheduled for the morning. I'm calling them kids here because when we stopped to talk to her about what to expect with the painting, she asked politely if there would be an adult in charge. These kids are long since past college and working on careers, but but we'll let her think that. We have a professional painter that will come back this next week to wrap things up but a large chunk of the house is done.

I think Bonnie had a nice morning. She was all happy with her paint choices. The yellow was called A Walk in the Park and the brown for the shutters was Reindeer Fur and she kept telling us how nice it all looked. Her daughter popped round to take a photo to show her husband in the nursing home, so that was also nice.

The paint is all stashed under the ramp, ready for Ted to come wrap up painting the house.  He was the same guy who prepped it for us by scraping all the loose paint off and priming. I am thankful we can offer this service at Habitat. Valspar donates all the paint and the volunteers do the rest. I hope Ted finds her as charming as we all did. I am sure the volunteers will remember this for quite some time and feel all happy to have helped. Indeed, it was magical.

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Christmas in August for THE CUTTING CAFE

Goodness, I'd say this card was a stretch for me, but today I cleaned out a closet and organized a bunch of stuff, including moving one of the Christmas trees and some of my Christmas craft stuff. So, it was easy to put my hands on some of the bling I used on this card. Equally easy was finding a good cutting file from THE CUTTING CAFE to make a nice card.

I really wanted to play around with layers and holly. I went digging in the files for where I'd seen holly before. Found a cool little cutting file in the Christmas Shaker Cards. Regina made a little holly piece for the snowman which was easy to upscale & emboss as a second layer in this card. While digging through the Christmas paper, I found this little mitten print & cut from the same file.

I must say it's pretty easy to pile on the bling when you won't have to mail the card for months! Can you tell I just couldn't help adding more and then more? I guess I might need to make a couple more Christmas projects to get it out of my system!

Also, you might spot a little reindeer there on the very bottom....talking about those tomorrow!

Happy Sunday!

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Erosion Bundling Collaboration

Just heard about this new thing the other day called Erosion Bundling. I don't normally associate erosion with a good thing, but in this case it's using the weather (or soil) to help age or distress paper or other items over a period of time. Mine is hanging out in a hanging plant until January. Well, the flower pot will actually come in the house with the plant in it, so I'll have to reposition the bundle at some point in the fall. I'd bury one too, but I am slightly against digging in the winter due to the possibility of snow, ice, or a seriously frozen ground. In January, I'll open my bundle and participate in an arist collaboration! Something to look forward to later!

I checked out a couple of posts where they added actual food or fruit peels, etc. I had already opted to ink up some seam binding and add some sumac to my collection of random papers, etc. as the fruits have the ability to dye items a rich purple/red. I considered adding food, but then I didn't want to encourage the chipmunks to further distress my bundle. I'm really hoping to open up a colorful & distressed bundle, but we'll see!

I'll be back after Christmas! Wish me luck!

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

My Peeps Layout for Another Freaking Scrappy

Anne over at Another Freaking Scrappy wanted us to a use circle or circles in our layout for August. Since I was scrapping a photo of THE MAN and Lexi in Lake George, I opted to pull out some very old paper that had a lot of circles around the acorns and I cut a circular hole IN the actual layout and mounted my photo underneath it.

Made me happy that circle! And because I didn't quite have a photo big enough, I added some of the green back in and used it as a good spot to put some flowers, leaves, and gold thread. So pretty! Love that shimmer!

One of the stars of this page is that butterfly that Lizzy Hill gifted me. That color really worked well with my paper and my photo! Thanks Lizzy!

Well, I'm off. It's the first and there is a whole new month to wrangle! Happy Tuesday!

Monday, July 31, 2017

Thunderstruck at Encampment

Last week was a very long week. The whole thing started several summers ago when the boy asked to go to an air show. Since we had asked for their input on our trips, we did some quick searching and found one in Rochester. I mean, the Blue Angels, how could you go wrong? Turns out that our local Civil Air Patrol kids were running around the event helping with safety, not that we met any of them at the time. There was of course a tent to get more information and we added our name and email address to the clipboard & went on our way, off to look at planes and drink lemon aid by the gallon since it was so hot on the tarmac.

Later when we got an actual email back and an invite to hang out at several meetings just down the road from us, we thought we'd give it a try. I wasn't sure the boy was all that military you know since it's an auxiliary of the US Air Force, but why not. His Grandpa Ham flew in WWII, but he was really little when he knew him. It's not like tales of glory were told around the table during Thanksgiving dinner. Besides, Grandpa Ham hardly talked at all about flying or the war at all in the manner typical of that generation.

Fast forward to now and Luke's a Tech Sargent. He signed up to go to Encampment this summer as it's one of the next steps to becoming an officer.  I'd be lying if I said this whole thing didn't scare the crap out of me. It was cool at first since they were posting updates and we spotted him several times in videos and in photos. Then, it was radio silence. We figure someone complained and they took all the videos down. The last part of the week dragged along.

I wasn't sure who we'd be picking up. A kid who was tired of getting up at 5 am, a two minute shower, and going everywhere with a battle buddy? Or one that was ready to rock and roll his way up in Civil Air Patrol and potentially head into the Air Force. Would he pass out in the car exhausted, not talk the whole way home, or regale us with tales Encampment?

The latter occurred.

He just wouldn't shut up and at one point was singing jodies. Since I had gotten up at 4:45, the whole thing quickly lost it's magic. Well, that and I was tired of the car. It was a three hour plus ride up and back. Looking back though, the whole ceremony very moving. At one point they had the cadets yelling THUNDER to AC DC's song Thunderstruck. Later they had World War II vets handing out awards and several vintage war planes flew by.

I was glad to have been there and even happy to come home and help wash a weeks worth of black t-shirts and socks. Where he goes now is up to him, but it's pretty clear to me that flying is in his blood. That and I need to invest in some blue paper....I have a ton of photos to get scrapped!

Happy Monday!

Friday, July 28, 2017

Lovely Time Layout

Two serious bike riders caught Pratt and I taking this groupie shot by the bike route sign. We both nearly died as we're obviously way too old to be messing with that kind of thing. He obliged me only because he knew I'd want to make a layout! I'm bound and determined to use up this paper, hence the black and white photo. It's super pretty.

The using it up part resulted in a lot of little layering by the actual photo including some stickers I cut in half. Check out that awesome water color heart. I played with water color too last weekend while camping....

Just added a little gold paint, some gold thread, and that rose & ribbon when I got home and this page was complete! I'm kinda keeping up with the weekend camping trips by making pages while I'm there...and in fact, I might just get caught up this times!

Happy Friday!

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Yuck: Lolly Pop Layout

So, I forgot my paper cutter when we went camping so I had to cut a lot of this page by hand...which turns out with a distress edger, who can tell. I really wanted to get this page scrapped because hello, my son ate a scorpion lolly. Holy grossness. Who does these things and why on God's green earth would someone make them and sell them.

In case you got distracted by my lovely little embellishments, take a peek at the lolly and the scorpion hanging out there. Then, you can read the label....equally gross. Excessive consumption may stimulate laxative effects....

It's a simple little page. Of course the bug paper helps it right along as does the sequence of photos. Thank goodness these kids like to text their friends photos, which was the whole reason I was allowed to take them!

Happy Thursday and hope nobody bugged you!

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

In the 'Dacks

Happy Monday! No, it's not Monday for you, but it is for me. I've been off for a couple of days on vacation camping in the Adirondacks...more specifically in Lake George, which in case you aren't aware is the best lake in New York. We have a lot of lakes to choose from, but having been on a bunch, I can say with authority, Lake George is the best. Anyhow, I've been woefully out of my element without access to a hot glue gun or paper cutter, but I did manage to make do with some paper and got two pages done on the picnic table. See my little bag there? It's got two paper packets I have been trying to work through since spring. I am winning though, as I'm down to mainly just scraps. Might have to restock before the next trip.

 I've been trying to stay busy. The youngest is off to Encampment which is basically like a military camp but for the Airforce. I'm trying to stay calm, but he's gone and can't text or call, so it's a bit unnerving, because we're a pretty close family. So, I've been reading too, finished up the second Sherlock Holmes book.

I'll be back tomorrow with a page...featuring the youngest...

I'm managing to keep caught up on pages so it's a recent camping trip, go me!

Happy Monday I mean Wednesday!

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Relax and Cupcake On: Card for the CUTTING CAFE

What is there not to like about glitter paper, a cool new cutting file to try, and some fabric washi tape? Not to mention I used up several scraps of paper that were hanging out on my desk so not only did I make a card, but I cleaned my work area. ;-) Score!

It was unexpectedly a whole lot of fun using silhouettes as a back drop yet a focal point for this card. Regina asked us to use a file of hers over at THE CUTTING CAFE which is named Fun with Silhouettes and contains over 66 images. Since I was in DIRE need of a birthday card (which is incidentally only four or five days late depending how the mail goes) it made perfect sense to grab the cupcake with a candle and a cake stand.

Off this card goes tomorrow to my SIS in LAW who is hopefully having a nice relaxing birthday week as she is off for the summer. Let's hope that is how things are going. More likely she's running kids around and wishing she could have a cupcake and put her feet up.

Have a fabulous Friday!

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Summer Vacation Time Layout: Tie Dye Party

Lately I've been pulling out paper that is old! This fruity paper is only from last summer I think...I had been scratching my head as to what I was going to use for these tie dye party photos....and while digging I also came across these really cool paper flowers...hence this page was born!

Really the main photo I wanted to show case was this one of Lexi and her crazy magenta fingers! So I printed it out in black and white and then again in color. Really like that look. ;-) Cute kid too!

I am really digging those spats. I was originally wishing to tie dye some paper, but hadn't really come up with a good plan on how to do that so I had to content myself with big ole purple splats and then some splatters. In general, this page is a lot like Lexi's party. First only two girls were coming and next thing you know, I had a houseful of kids making shirts! Unplanned fun!

Hope your week is off to a good start! I'm back tomorrow with a cool card that is all glittery!

Monday, July 17, 2017

4th Fun Layout: Centerway Fireworks

Goodness, what are things coming to over here! I haven't managed a page in forever and when I got this one around, it's super flat! Just some little gems and flowers! This one was inspired by taking out some really old paper and determining that using it up would be just the ticket for a 4th of July page.

I don't know if you can tell, but the light blue piece has circles cut out so you can see the flower paper behind. The flower paper is really pretty but super busy. I thought circles worked well for fireworks!

I asked a friend if I could use her firework photo. That particular one was my favorite firework from the show. It was nice she said yes, I didn't even try to take photos after that terrible photo of Lexi and I in the dark!

Anyhow, I'm off to start this week! Happy Monday!

Saturday, July 15, 2017

All Work & Not Much Play (but it's OK)

Goodness I've missed blogging. Not only is construction season upon us at work, but we've nearly wrapped up one house and due to timing, we did our dedication to our new home owner. That's all over Facebook if you are interested. Heck, you can even watch my speech. (wince) We have all kinds of little extra projects we do to that go along with the house that I thought I'd share since I am certainly not crafting. More like falling asleep early on the couch!

Candy Bar Doug always gives us a tree or bush for our new home as part of a memorial to his wife Debbie. Since this little Japanese maple wasn't going to plant itself and the guys were busy inside working on trim, I got all kinds of crazy in the front garden. It involved taking out a honey suckle bush too which wasn't all that fun in the heat, but I did win finally. I think in part it was because of that awesome shovel which is older than me...

We also gave the new homeowner this adorable little bookshelf that one guy built, the other guy used his CNC machine to carve the top logo, and then I helped paint & distress. The new homeowner is a vintage girl, and it will fit right in with house. It's part of another memorial where we also fill it with books due to a donation from Rotary.

Next week we're off to tackle the backyard, which is quite a jungle. It's sad but some of the awesome roses have to get cut out because the little people need room to play. During the dedication they were playing in the front yard and driveway...and that can't happen!

Well, I am off to paint a house with a crew of young area professionals. I had the house prepped yesterday with some scraping and I hope they found all the wasps then...It's cooler today, but I imagine I'll be asleep early again on the couch...

Happy Saturday!

Monday, July 10, 2017

Happy Happy Mail

I've missed Lizzy as she's been more on Instagram than blogging these days, but it was quite a happy surprise to get awesome mail from her! I did a little photo shoot on my favorite vintage tray to show it off! Check out that cool tassel and metallic doily!

It's full of yummy goodies! So rock star! I can't wait to pack this in my bag that's going camping with me! I'll be scrapping on a picnic table with wine & this awesome present!

There is a second bunch of goodies too! Happy bling dance!

It's lovely everywhere! She always picks awesome color combos that I never think of! Thanks so much Lizzy and just think, you'll be camping with me!!!

Have a great day!

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Today Butterfly Affirmation Piece with Pop Up Flowers for THE CUTTING CAFE

Oh my I am loving my new butterfly affirmation piece. Lexi painted this wooden butterfly and got annoyed before she finished it. Hence it was mine to play with! It was a perfect candidate for these new pop up flowers from THE CUTTING CAFE.

Check them out! I played a little with the paper leaves to give them more dimension. I also added those cool stamens to the flowers. 

Once I cut a little hole on the bottom, it was easy to sneak in the stamens with some hot glue. Of course these flowers are collapsible, but in this application they are just pretty! 

I have this butterfly hanging out right in front of my kitchen sink to remind me to live in TODAY and not worry so much about tomorrow. I'm really good at borrowing trouble and worrying about the eight things that probably won't happen! So, just focus on TODAY! 

Hope your Friday is a happy one! Hugs!