Wednesday, December 31, 2008

And My Confidence Builds Yet Again!

I was in my bathroom putting mouse in my hair to dry it and Kellie says "OH! Is that what you put in your hair to get it to do those crazy things?" mmmmm, aaaaahh, what ahhh crazy things are we talking about pumpkin? LOL What the hell is going on on top of my head for her to say that?! LOL Granted I've been known to sport a helmet head on occasion prompting Jason to tell me to go long for the pass, but I thought I had that under control! LOL Perhaps color isn't my only hair issue! Maybe I should just put a hat on my head and call it a day!

I'll be back later...I'm off to Joann's and Michael's with gift cards in hand and there is a CLEARANCE SALE going on! Yeah baby. And I want to show you what I've been working on till the wee hours. See ya later.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Two Great Books!

I bought this new book and it's great! It's not like other craft business books out there. It focuses on journaling but not for the art of journaling. It's journaling to set goals for yourself both personally and professionally. It talks about how your journal can help you get focused, set goals, work out problems...etc. It's a great book.


In the book are images of other peoples journals. I love this tiny pocket sized one...


And these are samples of other small journals....

It talks about how to make your own, etc. Which got me thinking about how to make a small one like the ones pictured above. I went over to Michael's and they have these small journals for $1 each in their bins. Not very pretty, but I will just paint over the covers. I purchased a few because Kellie is a journal writing fool -- :O) -- and because I thought the size was right (and the price). Then I went over to Joann's and they had these packs of chipboard on CLEARANCE!!! You know I'm all about clearance items! They are 4 1/2 inches x 6 1/2 inches...
Then I was in the aisle with the cardstock and they had a bunch of 4 1/2 inch x 6 1/2 inch packs of assorted cardstock on CLEARANCE! Oh boy! So I'm going to punch holes in the chipboard and matching holes in the cardstock pack and get big rings like the ones shown in the first photo and make myself some little (colorful) journals. I want to make one for each project/theme -- like one for brooches, one for mini quilts by theme, etc. so that I can jot down my ideas and problems that need to be worked out as I sew.
Then Miss Kellie got this book for Christmas with her sewing machine...

It's a great book for teaching children how to sew with a sewing machine. I had the same book for Molly when she got her sewing machine years ago. It has easy to follow instructions that are written on a child's level. It has pages that you copy on the copier and then practice sewing to learn control of the machine and how to make turns...

And it teaches you all the parts of the sewing machine...
And how to be safe when you are sewing with your machine...

It also has some beginner projects for a child to make. -- very simple things to sew. So, if you know a child who wants to learn how to sew with a sewing machine I highly recommend this book.
I did make it down to my sewing room/area. It's shaped like a T and has a closet (it has a rough-in for a small bathroom, but right now it's just my storage). The closet is full of junk basically! That is my New Year's resolution -- get in that closet and clean it out!!! Anyhoo, I went down to play and GOOD GOD! What a mess I had made over the last few weeks in this section! I had been just piling, piling, piling -- sheesh! It took me most of the day to go through all the junk and sort it all out! It was relaxing though I have to say. It's mostly finished, but I still have the one corner off to the left to tackle today.
It was nice to be with my stuff again - even if it was just to clean up!

Monday, December 29, 2008

Good Morning Friends!

I can't believe Christmas has come and gone and that 2009 is only a few days away! Crazy. So, Santa came...
And Kellie loved loved loved her new sewing machine!...
I hope your holiday was nice. Because Mark can't be in a car for longer than 30 minutes without his back acting up we weren't able to drive the 2 hours to and from my sister's house so my family came here again. It was nice -- much easier than Thanksgiving that's for sure!

Starting today, Mark is back to work full days now so things should start to get back to normal -- well, once the kids go back to school next week - it will.
Well, I just wanted to check in and say hello! I'm going to straighten up around here and try to get into my sewing room, too - have a great day!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas!!!

Oh the year of the Easy Bake Oven...did you have one of these? It was like 1972-ish. I think I'm 7 here. My brothers were fascinated by it.

Well like you I am making last minute items. Gingerbread cookies...

GINGERBREAD COOKIES



2/3 Cup Margarine or Shortening
1/2 Cup Sugar
1/2 Cup Molasses
1 egg
3 Cups Flour
1/2 tsp Salt
1 tsp Baking Powder
1 tsp Baking Soda
1 tsp Cinnamon
1 tsp Cloves
1 tsp Ginger
1/2 tsp Nutmeg



Cream margarine, sugars and molasses. Add egg and mix well. Sift together the dry ingredients (I must confess that I don't sift them...I just stir them together), blend into creamed mixture. Chill a few hours. Roll dough 1/4 inch think on lightly floured surface. Place coolies on a greased baking sheet. Place cinnamon candies for eyes or buttons. Bake at 350 degrees for 8 to 10 minutes. Remove to rack to cool. Leave plan or decorate with Royal Icing.


PERFECT ROYAL ICING


1/2 Cup Cold Water
1/4 Cup Meringue Powder


Beat until peaks form then add 4 cups of sifted confectioners sugar (1 pound box) and beat in.


Pecan Turtles...

These are really easy to make. You line a baking sheet with wax paper. Spread broken pecans (or whatever kind of nut you want) over the wax paper in a thick layer. Melt chocolate in a double boiler and set aside. Melt the caramel in a double boiler. With two spoons drop the melted caramel onto the nuts in blobs randomly spaced. With a small spatula scoop up the caramel with the nuts that are attached and place on a second baking sheet lined with wax paper about 1 inch apart. With a spoon pour the melted chocolate over each one of them. Place in the refrigerator for about 5 to 10 minutes until the chocolate is set. Keep piling the remaining nuts back up and repeat with the caramel and chocolate. These go very quickly at parties! They are yummy! (I've made them with pretzels pieces too and they were yummy too!)


Merry Christmas friends! And don't be like Howard -- Control yourself at the parties! You don't want to be caught looking like this....



Someone might take your picture and post it on a blog! :O)

Thursday, December 18, 2008

A Little Known Fact...

christmas 1966
So since I can't craft a damn thing right now because I only get about 10 minutes to myself a day I thought that I would give you a little information about me.... Did you know that I have a theme song? I do. This is my theme song!

Yes friends, back in the day when I was about 16 - 17 I was convinced that going to Beauty School and then heading to New York to be amazing was definitely the thing. I did finish High School first and I lasted maybe 3 months in beauty school! Three Entire Months! What cinched it that it was not the job for me...I could not master the shampoo bowl! LOL I swear that thing had it in for me from the get go! I think I nearly drowned my new beauty school friends about 5 times before I finally got the epiphany that perhaps I should go to college for a Business Administration degree instead. So I packed up my practice head, curlers, and scissors and headed for college. Where I met my dear dear dear husband who has given me a glimpse of retirement life these past 6 weeks. Lets just say that when he retires...I think I'll get a job! LOL

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Is Nothing Sacred?

Today I had my hair done. (and when I said "Kristen I really like this copper color in my hair but for winter I want to step it up a notch with the highlights you put in okay? - She apparently stepped it up a few notches. -- Mark said all I need are some big hoop earrings and some gum to snap and I'll be perfect! hmmm) Anyhoo, Mark dropped off Jason and Ryan after school because they had appointments that overlapped mine. They didn't like coming to the salon that I go to at first, but after I explained that my gal is great and she will do exactly what they want and she's young so she knows what's hot! That got them. Ryan decided that he likes this other woman so we all use Kristen and Ryan uses Deana. Jason doesn't really speak while having his hair cut - he's very shy (especially when the teenage shampoo girl is around). Only minimum speaking. I look over and Ryan is talking talking talking talking to Deana. So when he's finished I asked him what he and Deana were talking about...Oh! I was telling her all about how I ate a big lunch but then I had stomach cramps during Math and how I had to go to the restroom and all about...STOP RIGHT THERE! You were telling her all that?! "Yeah? What?" Oh that boy. He's too funny. Poor Deana. I said what was she saying to all of this information?! He said "she was just saying stuff like yeah, I hate when that happens. Why are you laughing?"

And back to my hair....It's a little orange I'm thinking. Molly said she likes the color but looking at it in the mirror...
And watching Santa Claus movies I'm thinking I could be this guys long lost momma!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Happy Birthday Jason!

Today is Jason's 17Th birthday. SEVENTEEN!!!
Look how young Mark is in this photo -- Christmas day 1991...
How did he get this big so quickly?...

Just A Quick Recipe Today...

Hi friends. I only have a second to list this recipe because the fun continues -- we start our sixth week of 24 hour togetherness this week so I'm off to do whatever the hell it is that is required of me today... :o)


Friday night -- yes night -- Molly said "Oh and mom tomorrow is Jen's Christmas party and I need 2 1/2 dozen homemade cookies okay?" Ahhh, do ya now? So anyway I made these press cookies...
They are very yummy. I used my Wilton cookie press (not the power one -- I use the one with the handle that you have to press up and down)...


SUGAR PRESS COOKIES

1 1/2 Cups Butter
1 Cup Sugar
1 Egg
2 Tbsp Milk
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
1 tsp Lemon Extract (I use a little more - like 1 1/2 tsp)
3 1/2 Cups Flour
1 tsp Baking Powder


Cream the butter and sugar. Add egg, milk, and both extracts and mix well. Combine flour and baking powder in a bowl and then add slowly and blend well.


Bake at 375 degrees for 10-12 minutes (mine only took about 8 - 9 minutes in my oven) on ungreased cookie sheet. DOUGH CAN NOT BE REFRIGERATED!!!!!!


Also, I doubled this recipe. I'm not sure how many dozen it makes, but I'm glad I doubled it. And as you can see, on some of them I used a half of a candied cherry before baking.
Have a great day. Craft something for me. boohoo. I miss you craft room downstairs and all of your sanity supplying goodness! 6th week....AAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Got In A Little Gift Making...

OMG! I actually got three hours to myself today! In the morning I cut out all the pieces to make two little bags...then movie watching in the afternoon with Mark...then time to finish them after dinner. There was a lot of --just a second, let me just finish this --going on, but I FINISHED THEM!!!!
The directions are here. One is for my mom and one is for my sister. I'm going to put a box of chocolate and a bag of homemade cookies in them. The chocolate factory is only about 35 - 40 minutes from my house and they are amazing chocolates! It's in Pennsylvania. The factory looks like an old barn and the store is this tiny little place that is wonderful. The chocolatier is a really nice man who always says hello as he passes through. Love Love Love that store! The Easter Bunny always gets his chocolate there and Santa usually makes a stop on his way to our house too. Great chocolate! Now that I know how fast these bags are to make I think I'll make one for Kellie's teacher with some cookies for Christmas.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Is Whoville Missing A Who?

Molly and I came across this photo of her the other day from Kindergarten...
Then yesterday we were watching the movie The Grinch... and we are now very concerned that there may have been a baby switch....

You be the judge. :O)

When I was growing up one entire wall in my room was covered with cork board and I would pin up pictures from magazines, catalogs, photos, etc all over it. It was like a giant scrapbook that I could look at all the time. I loved it! Well, Mark wouldn't let me do that here so I've been gluing all of those things into sketchbooks for years and years. I clip images because of many reasons...could be color combination, texture, an embroidery stitch used or a pattern that would be fun to do in embroidery, or a shape, you name it. The reasons for keeping the images are endless. Some are just because they are pretty and I like to look at them. I miss my big wall of images, but this works well too...
I have many many sketchbooks filled with sketches and these clippings. I love these books! Sometimes I look through them for color or texture ideas. Sometimes I look through them just because I like to. So anyway, I spent a good portion of my time last night clipping and gluing (with my headphones on and my Ipod turned up so unfortunately I couldn't hear anyone calling my name -- such a shame). It's one of my favorite things to do. I want to make a Nutcracker in fabric so I've been saving these images...
And I want to make a Nesting Doll in fabric so I've been saving these images too...

I always keep images of flowers and nature...
I love these books! They are great for inspiration!
On a different topic...Sheldon is sporting pig tails these days...
And Howard was very busy watching his favorite show on TV...
His tongue is always sticking out. He's a strange dog....Poor Ryan can never watch TV alone...

He would never dream of making Howard move. :O)

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Don't Get Too Excited...

Kellie asked me this morning..."Mom, what's a Will?" I said "A will is a piece of paper that Mommy and Daddy have that if something happened to us you would have money and Aunt Ann and Uncle Don (my sister and her husband) would take care of the four of you until you were grown up." She said "Awesome! Not that I wouldn't miss you, but then we would live at the BEACH!!!" Well don't get too excited pumpkin I'm not dead yet! :O)

Monday, December 8, 2008

Ahhh, the Christmas Parade!

Yesterday was the Christmas parade in town. It was 30 degrees but felt more like 16 with winds from 25 to 40 mph. COLD! Very Very COLD! And like an idiot, I didn't want to bring my camera case so I just put my big lens on the camera thinking I wouldn't be able to get close to the kids...well, I was wrong so most of my photos came out blurry with a nice crisp background! rrrr. Anyhoo, here are some of the photos...
Miss Molly that flag twirlin' superstar!!!
She can no longer feel her face, or her feet, or her hands...but hey she's havin' fun! Do you see how the girls are only in these little t-shirts -- the teacher sent an email saying to wear coats, hats, gloves, etc while they waited their turn, but then when they got there she had changed her mind! She DIDN'T let them wear their coats while they waited TWO HOURS outside in what felt like 16 degree weather for their turn to march. And when it was their turn to march she wouldn't let them wear their flag team jackets because she wanted the green and red t-shirts to show! mmmm.
Miss Molly has RS so this was NOT a good situation for her. Her hands really hurt, she lost all feeling in her hands and feet for hours! She was using heat packs for a few hours after she got home. And didn't change out of her layers until she went to bed...two sets of long underwear (the super heavy duty ski kind), her marching band t-shirt, and her flag team jacket! Her ski socks (two pairs) and her Uggs. And every time I said "are you getting warm yet?" she would say "I'm getting there." Not a good thing. 10:30PM she said "well, I've got the feeling back in my fingers." Idiot teacher. Fashion before health I always say! idiot.


And then there was Jason, who hates Marching Band more than anything in this world, would not even look at me!
Especially once he realised that I intended to take his picture with not only his Marching Band uniform on but with a Santa hat on his head. Oh, he was not happy with me!

So of course I just kept snappin' away! :O)
The parade started at the corner of Main Street (basically right in front of the fire house) and went about two blocks - around the corner and ended at the town park. Very short, but not short enough in this cold! I love how the parade was basically around the block in town and every piece of fire equipment was in it!And feeling all small town nostalgia-y...


I bought Twinkies Saturday. Twinkies!!! Just the name makes me laugh. When I see a Twinkie I think of grade school and June Cleaver... And my best friend growing up who lived right next door. Her mother was June Cleaver. She always wore a dress with heels, lipstick, and a silk scarf tied in her hair like a headband. And when she vacuumed she was in heels. God I loved that! (My mom had "cleaning clothes" - no lipstick, probably didn't shower, and there were no heels to be found!) That's all I ever remember her doing though...vacuuming. Then she would take a bath in her RED bathroom with a DIMMER SWITCH!!! and after her bath she would take a nap before making dinner! Every afternoon she took a nap and a bath!!! Geez that woman was something!! As a child I thought she was amazing...Now...thank God she's not my mother! Can you imagine the anxiety you would feel when she came for a visit!