Thursday, May 19, 2011

Baby Carriage - Cricut

A colleague had a little baby boy and came back to the office to visit and brought her new little bundle.
I wanted to try out the baby carriage template from My Time Made Easy.

Here is the result - I kept it in the colours of a photo that we had of the new little boy - cream, brown and blue.

Materials: CS, PP (Michaels), Template (My Time Made Easy), ribbon, brads, foam tape, adhesive tape, decorative edge punch (Martha Stewart), 1/8" hole punch (Fiskars).

Until next time, have a great day!

Sunday, May 15, 2011

My first She Art for me, and Happiness & Inspiration Project update

Happiness & Inspiration project update for May.

I had DD and myself signed up for a cupcake decorating class called "Mommy and me" at a local cooking store in Erin called What's Cookin the weekend of Mother's Day. We also picked up some supplies to make them at home: a cupcake corer (so you can stuff your muffin or cupcake with treats), a squeazable decorating icing container and a decorating pen.  We are definitely going to try that at home - YUM!

I have also signed up for the FREE ecourse called Photoshop Skinny-mini, and it starts May 16th (tomorrow!!!).  From the title, it might make you think that the class was for learning how to alter your photos to make yourself skinny!!!! :)  But it is actually a great class to learn all the basics and essentials of Photoshop (my latest passion).

She Art - Love
Here is my She Art project that I made for myself. I tried to copy my hair style and colour (not sure that I captured it, but it was a good first try). Most importantly I had a lot of fun!

Until next time, have a great day!

Friday, May 13, 2011

DS - multi-media art (let's call it "he" art)

Last post was my DD's multi-media and She Art work - so this post is the art from DS!
So let's call it He Art, not She Art!

DS - he is 4, here are his creations.
#1 - 8x10 canvas "Owl"

#2 - 10x14 canvas "cars" and "transformers"

#3 - 8x10 canvas - painting (apparently in his dark period!)

Lots of fun, lots of mess, but some great time together creating!
Here are some actions photos, of him working hard on his canvases.

Until next time, have a great day!

Monday, May 9, 2011

DD's multi-media creations and She Art

As promised, here are the multi-media canvases the kids have made themselves - while I have been trying the She Art Workshop ecourse.
This post is of DD's art.  Next post will be DS's.

DD - she is 6, here are her creations.

#1 - 8x10 canvas "Birdie". Love the dimension on the sun!

#2 - 11x14 canvas "Owls"

#3 - 11x14 canvas - her first real "She Art" creation of herself

Lots of fun, lots of mess, but some great time together creating!
Here are some actions photos, of DD working hard on her canvases.

Until next time, have a great day!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Happy Mother's Day - and She Art!

To all the ladies out there - Happy Mother's Day!
We are having wonderful weather in Ontario today, for this special Sunday!  Hope everyone is getting out and enjoying the sunshine!

I finished going through the 3 week ecourse from Christy Tomlinson that I talked about in this post HERE.  Lots of fun.  The kids have made 3 of their own multi-media pieces along with me, so that it was a real family affair.

We made 1 for my mum for Mother's Day and gave it to her today.  We used all of her bright, favourite colours - and then got her tshirts to match those!  Here is our creation - we used a photo of her to try to copy the hair style and colour. Check it out - not bad for our first try!

Materials: 8x10 canvas (Michaels), Mod Podge, foam brosh, 1" paint brush, tissue paper - all colours, old book (ripped page out of), patterned paper (assorted), 'She' pattern (Christy's workshop), bubble wrap, acrylic paints, Rub-ons, wheel stamp (SU!), distress ink (Tim Holtz), Staz-on ink - black, permanent black pen, Smooch ink, 'She' phrase (Christy's workshop).

I'll be back with some of the other creations from the kids, and the She Art that I made for myself too!
Until next time, have a great day!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Happy Easter!

Happy Easter to everone!
Hope you are enjoying the long weekend!  DH and the kids get a 4 day weekend, but I have to go back to work tomorrow! :(

Anyway - we had a busy weekend.  We painted the house (yep, almost every room in it - 2 of the large, plastic pails of paint later......) and then at night, I tool the fantastic SHE ART WORKSHOP on-line while I relaxed. Yet another one of my ``finding inspiration and happiness`` things - added to the month of April!  YEAH!

If you haven't heard of this workshop, check out the link to Christy Tomlinson's blog post HERE  that talks about this workshop.  It is a mixed media workshop, where you learn to create art on canvases using things we all probably have around the house for the most part, while you learn some great new techniques.  The workshop gets you to explore your creative side, and let it all out! Then you make a lady to finish it off!
I signed up for the workshop in the second week of the 3 week course - but that`s OK, you work at your own pace and have 3 months to access all of the great videos, downloads, and information!

So at night after painting and when everyone is asleep, I have been working through all of the videos for all of the weeks - making notes and planning my first She Art canvas.  I will post my art when it`s made - I really excited about getting messy and making my first one - and more!  I picked up 4 canvases so that I can get everyone in the family working on one with me - it will be messy but I think everyone will have fun!  All my supplies are sitting in the kitchen waiting for me to start - can`t wait!

This Friday evening is the BBQ class with hubbie in Erin.  Date night!  I have no clue what it will be all about, but we will have fun anyway - doesn`t matter!

Until next time, have a great day!

Monday, April 11, 2011

Playing......with food and my Cricut

So, I'm back with another long-winded update on my Happiness/Inspiration post that you can see HERE.
It's been a while, so you may need to re-read the long post above and perhaps THIS other long update too.
Here's what's been happening...

MARCH - March Break with the kids was a lot of fun. We went to London, Ontario and hung out in the pool at the hotel, did a bit of shopping, made some "stuffies" at Build-A-Bear, ate out at our favourite places, and went bowling, arcading, adventure land exploring and to the movies.
The Monday of March Break before we left for London - we had a "Crafternoon" with friends at the house and made some more of the wooden block collages.  DD made one of herself, and also DS made one too (with a bit of help from Mum!). I have them proudly on display at my desk at work!

I also bought myself a Cricut machine - finally! A red one!
And to go along with the machine, I bought the Sure-Cuts-A-Lot 2 software from the Craft Edge site - so that I can cut out svg files from my computer instead of purchasing Cricut cartridges.  That is the reason I finally broke down and bought the machine, because I would never pay the money to buy tons of cartridges.
I bought some svg files from My Time Made Easy and have been experimenting ever since. Here is my first project - the CAGED template, at full size.

Then I made the same template at 50% of the size, so that it was the size needed to fit a battery-operated tea light.

Here they are together so that you can see the size difference.

Next up for my Cricut will be the Baby Carriage template, and the Cake Slice template I think!  And that was it for March and my Happiness projects for that month!  Not sure where the time goes!

APRIL - I went to the "Playing with Food" class this past weekend at a local gourmet food store.  We got a handy tool called a Veg-Art tool, with which we learned how to make vegetable flowers like tulips from coloured peppers. Here is the tool and another one that can turn your veggies into tealight holders!

Here are the coloured pepper tulips:

And kiwi decorations:

And leek lotus flowers:

As well as some flowers made from an apple and carrots! Looks cute in the Wheat Grass.

Definitely an interesting hour spent on Saturday!

Also in APRIL I have the following still to do -
  • I start my Photoshop 2 classes here in town.  Photoshop 1 was fun and I learned a lot!  I have also bought the Adobe instructional "Classroom in a book" for Photoshop and another Instructional video series too, so that I can continue to learn everything this program can do! I am really enjoying it!
  • This Friday, a group of us go to the CreativFestival for more crafting inspiration and laughs (yes PITA, I can't wait for you to make me laugh as only you an do!).
  • BBQ class with hubbie comes last in April.   Our Date Night consists of a 2 hour BBQ tune up and hopefully some yummy eats!
So lots on the go - and lots to share.
I will post my next Cricut template projects as soon as they are done.
Until next time, have a great day!

Saturday, April 2, 2011

QR Code addition

Hi everyone!
If you take a look at the right sidebar on my blog you will see that I have added a QR code there - which has a link to this blog embedded in it.

What's a QR code you ask?
A QR code (short for Quick Response code) is a 2D barcode that is readable by Smartphones, which has information embedded in it like text or other information - even contact info, but it can also direct the phone to open a specific URL (website) using your browser, send a text, make a phone call, etc.  Marketers are using these more and more to provide information and offers to their customers - they are like paper-based hyperlinks.

To read a QR code, your Smartphone needs to have an app (like ScanLife or other) that uses the phone's camera to read the code or Blackberry messenger V5.0 which has a built in reader in it.

So, now if you want to pass my blog information on to a friend without having to type out the URL - just "right click" and save the QR picture and then forward it to a friend.  Or you can scan it yourself to access my blog while you are on-the-go! Fun!

Until next time, have a great day!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Glass charm tutorial from Lorrie Everitt

Hi all! Quick post today!

Wanted to post a link to a wonderful tutorial from the instructor - Lorrie Everitt - who taught me how to make my glass charms shown in THIS POST. Yep - my Happiness post!

It is the 1 year anniversary of her own blog - and she has posted a tutorial on how to make these for everyone to play along!  CLICK HERE to see her fantastic tutorial.

Until next time, have a great day!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Inspirations, Happiness and fun continued

I'm back with the latest updates on my happiness and inspiration project.
As a reminder, HERE is my last post (or you can just scroll down to see it, too) where I listed all of the things I had planned over the next few months to put a little bit of happiness and inspiration into life.

For FEBRUARY - I had the Mixed Media class booked for this past Thursday - and here is my finished project!

The class was fun and quite easy.  There was only 1 other lady in the class so we got lots of individual attention and instruction - which made the project go really smoothly!  I love the saying from Winnie the Pooh, so I got a second print off of it to do the same collage for Little Man (DS).

If you live to be a hundred,
I want to live to be
a hundred minus a day
so I never have to
live a day without you.  Winnie the Pooh

And I also booked an additional class in FEBRUARY, it's the one I was planning on doing in MARCH - Lampwork Beads.  I convinced my Mum to take the class with me too - she did so well!  Here are some shots of her making a glass bead, under the guidance of our instructor Bev.

And here are our combined finished glass beads.  They are not perfect - just like us!  But they were a great start, and it was a lot of fun and we learned something new and out of the ordinary!

An additional class came up for FEBRUARY as well - Photoshop 1.  It is offered through our local adult education centre called The Learning Centre.  I signed up to take a total of 5 computer courses over the next 2 years, and I selected Photoshop 1 (running from Feb - April) and Photoshop 2 (April - May) to start off with.  First class was last night and it was GREAT!  I really enjoyed it and was glad I signed up.  The instructor is very informative and patient with everyone.

Next update - our Family Day Long Weekend!  We had a blast on the snowmobiles and communed with nature - while taking some great photos, too!  Can't wait to share!
Until next time, have a great day!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

In search of INSPIRATION...... and happiness, every day

WARNING - very long post!!!
It has been ages since I last posted anything on my little blog here! I have no clue where the time has gone - or what I've done with it!!! But I do know that I have been in search....

Over the Christmas holidays I took a good close look at my family, and how we were all doing and feeling and wanting to do/be/try/discontinue (yes it's OK to say that too!). I noticed that all of us had become fully immersed in the weekly grind - Yuck! It's Monday........Yeah! It's Friday! Groundhog Day - everyday! And that is just not right! The kids are only 4 and 6 - and even they were thinking this!  We needed some good New Year's resolutions for happiness and INSPIRATION.
Don't get me wrong, there is absolutely nothing wrong, really. We are very fortunate is so many ways - good jobs, good health, family, friends, interests, etc. - but we were all still not quite "Happy" or I really mean "Happy as we could, and should, be". So I went off in search of INSPIRATION.

I started with myself. Because as the saying goes "If Mamma ain't happy, ain't nobody happy!"
I know for sure I like to do crafty things - any kind of craft really. And yet I hadn't done any in a long time. Why? I just wasn't INSPIRED. I NEEDED INSPIRATION - and yes, happiness. So I tackled it just like a regular project: assessed the issue, figured out what INSPIRED me and made me happy, brainstormed ideas on what to do - and tackled it head on.  So, with my list of thoughts and interests, I went on-line and did some hunting on anything and everything that I could take classes on that looked interesting, didn't need a lot of supplies I didn't have and didn't require any particular pre-requisite skill or huge time commitment. It needed to be attainable, actionable and DIFFERENT!  I needed INSPIRATION and I needed some new experiences to do that. Here's what I came up with as a monthly, short-term plan:

JANUARY - a class called "Special Gift Giving" at a scrapbook store close to work called Scrapbook Queens. I signed up for this mainly because of the glass pendants, as I had a kit of this in my craft cupboard but had never made anything with it - so I needed instruction and INSPIRATION.  I took the class and here are the results:

I learned some new techniques, made 2 necklaces: one for me and one for DD which we both wore the next day, I met a few new ladies, got a night away from my usual routine and found a bit of INSPIRATION.  It might not necessarily be my "style" but it met my criteria! Off to a good start. CHECK, DONE!

And when discussing my INSPIRATION and happiness quest with a coworker one day over lunch, she mentioned that she knew of a book called The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin (I gave you the link to the book, but I bought my audiobook at iTunes) which sounded very similar to what I was doing.  A lady tried to find happiness in her life through different thing, thoughts and actions.  So I came home and bought the audiobook. Yes, not the print book because I don't really take the time to sit and actively read things that require too much time - but I did have at least 2 hours each day of wasted time in my car (and I hate wasted time!) so the audiobook was the solution.  I am loving the book, learning lots, finding things and thoughts that are similar to mine and also finding INSPIRATION.  CHECK, DONE!

FEBRUARY - a class called "Introduction to Mixed Media/Collage", again at the Scrapbook Queens store.  I have no clue what it's all about - but I have picked out a photo, selected a saying from the selection they had - and I am ready to go on Thursday.  Something new to try and learn about - and hopefully get INSPIRATION from.  I'll post my results once I take the class.
I also signed up for 4 classes on "Digital Painting" at a local art studio which I started on Saturday.  Interesting so far - and INSPIRING. I learned about Photoshop techniques in this first class - and will start back once again after the Family Day long weekend here in Ontario.  I'll post my results when I'm done.

MARCH - I am planning on taking a class on making lampwork glass beads from a local artisan who has a studio nearby.  It involves an open flame and hot glass - how much trouble do you think I can get into??!! 

APRIL - I have signed up for a class called "Playing with Food" at a local cooking store. This is where they make interesting table displays and tealights out of regular everyday food items.  Looks interesting.  I also signed DH and I up for a class this same month at the same cooking store on brushing up your BBQ techniques.  Again - something different to try and experience and find INSPIRATION from.  And yes DH is not immune from my happiness quest, so I rolled him into my plans (I'm easing him in, he's not exactly jumping in with both feet for himself although he is 100% supporting my quest!)

Other things I am looking into are glass blowing, photography, painting, Photoshop and other things like that.  We'll see what I find.

Next I tackled DD.  I knew she didn't like the gymnastics class I have had her signed up for - for what appears to be 4 years now. So, I phoned them and discontinued her registration for this.  She was relieved.  Yes, it's OK to say you don't like something - as long as you tried your best, and gave it a chance.  Nothing lost if you tried something new.
So here is her plan:

JANUARY - Discontinued gymnastics - CHECK, DONE!  Resumed art class that she loves - CHECK, DONE!  She loves this, and here is one of her paintings.  I think it is fantastic, she's only 6!  Daddy has it in his office to show everyone - he's so proud.

I also signed her up for Hip Hop dance class.  Fun, exercise and some confidence building too.  She loves it, so another CHECK, DONE!

MARCH - start piano lessons.  I used to teach piano - and tried to teach DD.  Unfortunately, we started skipping lessons as things got busy, and I just didn't set aside the time to do it.  So I have signed her up with a teacher to do weekly lessons starting after March Break.

Next I tackled the Family as a whole: we as a family like to snowmobile in the winter, and we also like to go different places on the weekends and stay in hotels to explore the area. The problem is that there are 4 of us and only 1 snowmobile. What to do?

JANUARY - We bought a second snowmobile!  It's used, but in perfect condition and is a real source of fun for us.  We've been out and about every weekend so far on the trails and exploring.  Time spent with the kids, with the family all together, outdoors in the fresh air - FUN! Here is the new machine!

FEBRUARY - We have just booked a snowmobile weekend away for the 4 of us and the 2 machines in Haliburton for a winter wilderness adventure.  Snowmobile trails, skating, bonfires with marshmallows, indoor pool, games room, etc. Something new and INSPIRING!  Can't wait.  And I have a digital photobook all set up on-line to insert our photos into and print out when we get back - a lasting memory of the new adventure for all of us to enjoy over and over again.
One other thing that is small, but a big source of unhappines for me is a spot that the whole family uses to pile dirty laundry after our work/school day.  Instead of going to our rooms and putting the clothes there- they always seem to collect in 1 spot by a bathroom, but in a hallway, all week long!  Drives me crazy!  Then I saw a page full of decorative laundry hampers reviewed in Canadian House & Home magazine and I sent DH off to buy a particular one from our local store on Saturday - and Voila!  Problem solved, and it looks nice too!  Everytime I walk by it now I have a huge sense of happiness!  Small thing, big results!

We are also going to eat healthier - all 4 of us.  With the busy schedule we end up eating out on the run or ordering in because of lack of time.  No more!  I am working on this now - and will keep you posted on what I come up with.

MARCH - March Break is coming up and we always go to London, Ontario for a few days to our favourite hotel where they cater to the kids: face painting, balloon animals, clowns, movie nights with a popcorn machine, temporary tattoos, crafts, etc.  So we'll book that again - for more family fun!

And I think I might have my Mum signed up to try some new things with me too.  And my friend P.I.T.A. - I haven't forgotten about you - I have plans to include you too, so fair warning! Make sure you pencil in the Friday in April for the Creative Festival with me!

So - that's the plan and we are already into the second month of it - and I am pleased with the results.  I was also pleased to get some new ideas and actionables from listening to The Hapiness Project.  I think I might slip out today and buy the actual book too - for me to take closer looks at the various lists Gretchen refers to.

How about you?  Make sure you find time for happiness and INSPIRATION because life is too short!
Until next time, have a great day!