Sunday, November 29, 2009

The Scrapbook Village

5,000 square feet of yummilicious goodies and a full area for scrapping! That is what I did yesterday. I got up early and loaded my car to drive 45 minutes to Glasgow, Kentucky! Yes, Santa Claus...there are scrappers in Kentucky! A full kitchen and lots of punches, computer, photo printing, and Cricut use at a scrapper's disposal. There was no fee just lots of chatter and scrapping going on. Of course, I did not leave without paying a hefty tab of goodies galore. I have new punches, a new Cricut cartridge, and loads of MORE Thickers that were on sale to add to my huge collection. I just cannot get enough of those letters I tell ya.
I also purchased a few items for gift giving as well.
Without further are a few of the layouts I completed in between snacking, giggling, and going out to eat with a new scrappy friend, April from Studio Calico.
I had every intention of making Holiday Cards and working on
some ATC's but there just was not enough time.
So, after church and some Santa Shopping today...
I am playing in my art room to continue the scrappy fun!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Tomorrow it starts...

My favorite morning of Orange Julius, Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, and Orange Cinnamon Rolls homemade! I plan on getting up early and cooking. This is what I do. I love it. I love the smells as they fill the house and the sounds of the parade in the background and! It will only be 3 of us this year but no need to worry because it is a trade off for Christmas.
All of our children will be home this year.
So, I am excited. I am anticipating great JOY and super warm HUGS.
It is Thanksgiving and I am thankful for so much...but here is a list that I have started...

1. Healthy Children
2. Zachary is stateside and not in Iraq/Afghanistan
3. New Friends (Lorie, Greg, April, & Robin)
4. A New Home
5. Warmth and Clothing
6. Christmas Spirit (hit me early)
7. Love and Companionship my husband gives me
8. Funny things my daughter says
9. My new daughter-in-law "Chelsey"
10. Time for reflection and sharing my thoughts

I think this is it for now, really. I keep a journal and there are more intimate things that I am so very thankful for. I am thankful that God has taught me valuable lessons this year. I am thankful that God reminds me everyday why I am so blessed and humbled with everything he provides for me. God is Real, God is Miraculous, God is Never Changing...I am wishing you a happy Thanksgiving and may the Peace of God and his blessings warm you and your family this Thanksgiving Holiday.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

It's Turkey Week....

Let the fun begin. Tomorrow I am baking. It is the traditional day to do this. I have NO idea what I am baking and considering there will not be many people at our table this year (this is a first) I believe I will be only baking a few things. They will be from scratch and great quality time with my daughter, too.
Bri lost her first tooth last night.
The Tooth Fairy was generous I must say. I am thinking there has been inflation hikes since I lost my teeth! LOL In any case, I just want to send out well wishes for a wonderful Thanksgiving and if you are traveling, be safe and patient on the roads this year.

This is another one of my favorite Christmas Ornaments. My Pink VW Bug!
Happy Travels!

Friday, November 20, 2009

My Snow Kids!

I get up way before dawn each and everyday. My early morning ritual of coffee on, TAWG, and then the computer is just what I do. This week my routine has changed a bit and I have been pretty happy about it. I am busier than usual and it keeps my mind occupied and thoughts driven in a different direction that is positive. Several weeks ago when I was at an Art Festival I met a lady that made Snow Kids. She makes them out of old quilts and bath robes. She tea dyes some of them and I just could not believe the price she was selling these little cuties for. So, I bought 2 to sit on a sled that I once used as a young girl in Germany. I of course painted the sled several years ago and added poinsettia accents and now it is finally complete with two Snow Kids. They are my new Christmas favorite within our home. I simply added some ribbon to one of the kids as it seemed the Christmas Branch was rather bare. I thought I would brag about them today.
I hope you are having a wonderful day and have a fabulous weekend!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Christmas Past and its Haunting...

This will be my very first Christmas without my, "MamMa." Yes, I know it is part of the cycle of life but she was the one constant family love of my life. She made Christmas special to me and well, it is simply going to be different this year. I was searching through some old photos and I scanned a few and one of the photos is where she came to Germany (where my father was stationed with the Army) the Christmas of 1979. WOW, 30 years ago! This means she was 60 years old and I remember her riding the sled with us down huge hills like she was 20 years old. It was wonderful. Our family celebrated Christmas at The General Hotel in Bertchesgarden, Germany. The General Hotel was where the S.S. of Hitler's Army stayed. The hotel sits below on a mountain under the Eagles Nest. We spent Christmas Eve in a Christmas town where the "Christmas Tree Lighting" originated. It is really a wonderful little town with white lights and the huge Christmas Tree was lit with real candles and the towns people circled the tree at midnight to sing. I do not remember what the songs were but I do remember the singing of O Tanenbaum. My grandmother held my hand and I remember her turning to my ear and telling me this, "Never forget the meaning of Christmas. Never forget at this moment you are loved far greater than you will ever know in your lifetime." I was only 14 and I can still remember her voice telling me that. I remember that all I wanted to do was go back to the hotel and listen to my new Linda Ronstadt Tape in my "boom box." As I look back, it was more special than I realize. It is a memory that I wished I had participated in and not let my teenage hormones get in the way. My grandmother had a special way make me feel special. I guess this is what grandmother's do. But I think my grandmother did it better than any other MamMa. She was there for me on just about every life altering moment and special event that I could remember. She would visit us no matter where we lived on this earth. My MamMa, there is no other like her. I only strive to put family first in the manner in which she did. I ran across a large tin "popcorn" thingy that had at least 500 Christmas cards in it. Amongst those cards are the very first card I gave her and of course years to follow. Some of them were in plastic bags and others she had made notes on them to the year and had a special star by the date and she would put where our family lived when she received them. My grandmother did not know it...but she was a memory keeper. Not in the style of books or archiving. But that the most little thing was important to her if even only a card with a name as you open it.
MamMa Bea--Christmastime in Germany 1979

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade...

Thanksgiving Day is Coming!
(along with Santa!)

Yes, this is on my BUCKET LIST! I love the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. The crowd, the decorations, the balloons, the singing, the floats, and mostly....Santa Coming to Town! I want to be among the few that get to the parade route around 3 AM with a hot thermos full of coffee and a warm wool blanket as the road is closed and the buzz of excitement begin. I have always watched the parade from the viewing pleasure of our home wherever we lived. The exceptions would be when we were in other countries when I was a child. Tradition in my family is orange julius, orange cinnamon rolls, and the smells coming from the kitchen as the Turkey is roasting. Silly I know, but this is on my TO DO list. I did live in New York for a short semester/quarter while I attended Juilliard. I simply think the traditions of the "official start" to the Christmas Season begins with this parade. I feel like a little girl when I watch it and I have memories that flash throughout my mind in remembrance of my mother and she in the kitchen and running into the living room when one of us kids would say, "come and look!" Now, we have DVR! I think my mother would have liked that.

So, I do believe in the spirit of the season~crowds and all. I think in every lifetime that one must see the parade in person just to feel the energy and creativity that it takes to create such a festive and memorable day.I am indeed excited to see the parade once again this year. It simply cannot come soon enough.
*Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade photos courtesy of FLICKR and the artists that posted them*

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Christmas Ornament for 2009

We are a blended family and my husband and I really did not have an ornament to display our Wedding Anniversary and when I saw that Lisa Leonard had created the most wonderful ornament this year in her collection, I could not resist. So, it is displayed on our main tree this year and thought I would share. If you sign up for her newsletter you get a 15% off code. I have purchased some of her jewelry as well. Her designs are very nice and is just in time for your Christmas Wish List, too.What you do not see in this photo is that on the opposite side of the ornament is the impression of a leaf with great detail to veins that are in leaves naturally.
Check out her site, Lisa Leonard Online .

Friday, November 13, 2009

Vintage Christmas Tree Ornaments...

I believe everyone has vintage/old ornaments that adorn their Christmas Tree every year. But this year I have officially inherited my mother's silk ball ornaments that she had made in Okinawa, Japan 1970 (during the Vietnam War). We lived there for 3 years and my mother designed some ornaments and a Japanese lady made them for her. There used to be about 60 of the silk balls but over the years some have come un-spun and were thrown away. After my mother died my grandmother had them on her tree for 20 years/Christmas Seasons. This year, I have them. My grandmother passed away this early summer and the Christmas Balls have come to live with me. I am delighted to have them on a tree with my grandmother's ornaments as well. But for me, these Christmas Ornaments represent years of memories and legacy. My mother was very creative and every year she hosted the very first Officer Wives Club Tea wherever we lived on base/post. This is the 21st year after my mother's death in 1988 that I have the blessing to decorate with these Christmas Balls. So, I thought I would share them with you here. I am pretty proud of them and I hope to one day pass them onto my daughter and she will take great care of them. Funny, while putting them on the special tree that I purchased this year just for these ornaments...a rush of memories flashed throughout my mind. Christmas music in the background, cookies in the oven, and cider in a copper pot on the stove. This is how my mother started her decorating. I hope to share and embed these kinds of memories with my children. I hope they always remember that it is the special touches of memories that mean the most.
Not the gift that was given under the tree.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Christmas is happening...

All around Bowling Green, Kentucky there are signs that the Holiday Season is off to a grand start. Wreathes, lights, and garland are being designed and hung for all to view and catch the spirit of the Christmas Season. I love that! I have 2 trees decorated and lit in our home. Yes, I know it is early but this year I am doing a little at a time with my full display to be in full view come Thanksgiving weekend.

I am pretty darned excited as I had 2 of my Christmas Canvas sell this morning to one of my scrappy friends. I know that she will enjoy them. She chose the Home for the Holidays and the Angel Wings Ornament canvas.

I have been designing some Christmas cards to see what I want to create in "mass production" to send out this year. But nothing has really "floated my boat." So, I think I will have the Christmas Tree Painting that I created photocopied in originals and possibly have them in sepia toned to adorn the front of my cards.
Makes it easy, fast, and plus everyone will get something original rather than the same old Christmas Designs that appear every year.

With this said, here are a few of the cards I created that were sold this past weekend at the Bizaar Bazaar. I had a great time and really enjoyed the networking and making new friends here in Bowling Green.
Now, off and about to take care of morning errands and clean my studio later on today. Man, can you say..."Disaster Area?"

Friday, November 6, 2009

It is that time of year...

It is that time of year when the cold nips at your nose and toes and you notice the local mall parking lot filling up with cars as the work day unfolds. It's that time when retailers are crossing their fingers to unfold all of their inventory that will soon be a present, gift, or accent in a home. Christmas trees are finding their way to the grocery store and that special ornament is waiting to be chosen to adorn a tree in a home where laughter and food will abound in making memories of yet another Christmas Season. This year may be different than those in past years. Money is no longer that commodity in which we can loosely let go and say, "I can make more." Every year our family gives of our time and our money for families in need and I am sure we will do the same here in our new city of Bowling Green. In Atlanta, it was about feeding the homeless on a side street until we had no food left to give out. Handing down old coats and shoes to make those let fortunate warm for yet another cold season until the sun can warm them naturally. I am thankful this year that I once again have security, food in my stomach, and lots of love surrounding me. I find that during these times those that are less fortunate for any reason seems to tug on my heart. Taking the everyday comforts for granted is what my daily cross is pounding on my heart. I have all that is needed to survive and extra to keep me entertained. I also think about the families that last season they were in their dream home they worked so hard for and this year are finding that they lost it due to the economic times of losing their job not being able to find another one that supported their economic status. Times are changing and we have become more aware of what is truly important. It is family. Funny how hard times really allow us to "see" our family in a different light that we once did not truly view before. So, this Christmas Season for our family will be about giving back. We will not spend a great deal on each other but take time to spend it with others that depend on that warm meal, used coat, and maybe a cot to sleep on for a night. This year, I am once again blessed to have all I want and things I think I want and throw aside. I am blessed because my family is important and memories of laughter, smiles, and that special hug go a long way for me. As I age it is not the "gift" under the tree that matters, but the person sitting at my table and sharing a memory that will live far beyond a tangible gift.
Yes, I am blessed. Not lucky...but oh so blessed.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Art Freckles Reveal!

So, many of you have asked me why I was inspired to create Christmas canvas'? Well, I owe it all to the November 2009 Art Freckles Kit, "TREATS FROM THE GINGERBREAD MAN!"

I would have never thought to add black to Christmas Colors and I am finding that I completely love the idea! I am reminded of the Scottish Kilt that is adorned with black accents and this kit is simply the inspiration I was looking for this Christmas.

Without further are my
Treats from the Gingerbread Man
*click on images to view larger*

Merry Christmas Canvas

Noel Banner

Christmas ATC Canvas

Happy Holidays Canvas

Joy Canvas

Cardinal Christmas Canvas

Home for the Holidays Canvas

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Christmas Creations

Christmas Creations on Canvas

Yes, one could say that I am in the Christmas Spirit of things! I have made LOTS of Christmas goodies lately. This coming weekend I have my first "show" and I hope to sell a few things. No biggie if I do I love everything I have created. So, without further ado...
*click on the image to view larger*