"The more you trust and rely upon the Spirit,
the greater your capacity to create."

~Dieter F. Uchtdorf

Friday, November 28, 2008

Angels


These are the pages I did for Letha's tip-in journal on Paper Traders. Her theme was "Angels". I also made some charms for her to attach to the binding of her book. For these pages, I used the same technique as I did on the backgrounds for my zetti cards. I didn't originally plan to use these large columns and arch so I probably should have moved the applied music text farther out toward the edges... I also should have stamped the background images a little darker because you can barely see that they're even there. Still, I like the soft effect.




Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Superheroes




I finally received Fred's round robin journal from last year's project. After an extended stay in Germany, this book finally made it back to the States. His theme was "Superheroes" and this is the spread that I made. I'm not super-excited about what I came up with here but I think it's cute and it fits the theme and I'm glad to have it done. I created my superparents at HeroMachine.com

Monday, November 24, 2008

Home for the Holiday

Friday afternoon, I hit the road and drove 600 miles to visit my family for the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday. It was a long drive getting here - over 9 hours - and mostly in the dark but the weather was good and I didn't run over any wildlife on the way (by biggest fear of driving alone at night in the middle of nowhere!)

As usual, the time is already flying by... I'm hoping to get some arting done while I'm here with my Mom (she's my muse =) but most of my time has been spent creating a mailing and webpage for our upcoming family reunion. I really enjoy working on detailed projects like that so it's been a lot of fun for me.

I also hope to make it to the movies sometime this week... I want to take my nieces to see "Bolt" - that hamster in the previews just cracks me up! Also, I'm dying to see the new James Bond movie "Quantam of Solace" - I think the new James Bond is totally hot!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Third Anniversary Project

Above is the inside of the mini frame I decorated for Paper Traders' third anniversary project. Below are the front and back covers. The challenge for this project was "A Celebration of Art" utilizing the number 3 in some way. The covers are strictly rub-ons over a sponged cover.


Vintage Family Holidays

These are the hanging ATC's I made for Teri's "Vintage Family Holidays" swap on Paper Traders. You can barely see the ribbons behind that are the hangers for these cards, which can be used as ornaments. I was very limited with images and inspiration so I relied heavily on these gorgeous rub-ons from The Paper Studio.

A Little Bit of Whimsy

These are the altered playing cards I did for our monthly challenge on Paper Traders. This month's challenge theme was "A Little Bit of Whimsy." Although I am generally happy with my images, I struggled with my backgrounds... I'm going through one of those uninspired phases where I can't seem to think outside the box.

I've Been Tagged!

I've been tagged by my sister, Letha, in Wyoming. She is a quick blooming artist who is bravely trying new things... check out her blog - it's lovely!

Here are the rules...
1. Link to the person who tagged you.
2. Mention the rules.
3. Tell six quirky yet boring, unspectacular details about yourself.
4. Tag six other bloggers by linking to them.
5. Go to each person's blog and leave a comment that lets them know they've been tagged.

So, here are my "six quirky yet boring, unspectacular details":

1. Like my sister, I too am a night owl - I can easily stay up to the wee hours every night but it is a huge challenge to get up each morning, regardless of how early I force myself to lie down each night. I compensate by sleeping in on the weekends =) I have been known to sleep past noon on a Saturday!
2. Unlike my sister, I really LOVE chocolate. I recently joined Weight Watchers and cannot eat it much anymore so I treat myself to Tootsie Rolls instead... or Fiber One breakfast tarts (they have one that's chocolate fudge).
3. Since I'm on a roll with this sister-comparison, I'll continue it by saying that I have a love/hate relationship with cooking. I know how and can follow any recipe with good results.... but it seems like such a wasted effort as a single person. The WW plan works much better with home-cooking so I have started making a large casserole or crockpot meal once a week and then freezing it in individual portions to eat later or take for lunch at the office. Maybe someday I'll have a family to cook for and then it will be something that I enjoy doing because another thing about me is that I love to do things for people I care about =)
4. I have a dual personality. At the office, I am uber-organized, work quickly and precisely, and am always dependable and responsible. At home, I am very nearly the opposite... to an extent - I let things pile up and I can be quite lazy for a time and then I will get to a point where I look around and realize that I can't function unless everything is in order and I will go on a cleaning binge!
5. I've never been outside the U.S. And I lived only 15 miles from the Mexican border for over 7 years but never crossed over. I've also been close enough to see Canada but never made it there (yet) either.
6. Maybe this is a manifestation of number 4 above, but I struggle with my art - sometimes feeling led by my muse and other times wracking my brain to come up with something creative. I think my work reflects this - it alternates between being much too neat and orderly and other times bordering on quite good (if I do say so myself =)

Ok- here are my six friends:

Veronica - a new friend in the art world who has a lovely blog and a great appreciation for life's blessings
Steph - who is always terrific about leaving positive feedback on my blog. She does some fun art and dollmaking
Outi - a Flickr friend who makes fabulous jewelry and clever ATC's
Lucy - an Aussie who has is very creative and has a special way with texture
Kim - I love her spirit and humor and she's such a brave artist with amazing results
Hermine - from the Netherlands - prolific and talented, she's quite an inspiration

Check them out - they're all fabulous in their own way!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

The Artist's Palette

These are the pages I did for Connie's round robin journal on Paper Traders. Her theme was "The Artist's Palette" and she asked us to use paint and try to expand our abilities by challenging ourselves. Since I am still in the early stages of exploring my drawing talents (as in, do I have any?) and I am not very inexperienced at watercolor either, these pages were definitely a challenge. I found the water especially hard to do. I'm not sure if you can really see all the details in here or if the scan washed them out but there are swirly white places to give the suggestion of foam and spray.


I should have taken the quote to heart and exercised a little more patience in writing it out... my lines tended to slant upward and the handwriting is sloppier than I would have liked.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Hanna

My most dearest friends, KC & Carolynn, recently welcomed their third child, Hanna. Isn't she beautiful?
Her daddy took this picture. He's trying to start his own photography business and you can see more of his work here: http://www.kcknoopphotography.com/Site/Home.html

Weighing In

Those of you who know me personally are probably aware that I joined Weight Watchers this summer at the advice of my doctor. I had been averaging a loss of about a pound a week for the first twelve weeks... and then I started gaining it back =( Over the past two weeks I gained back 3 pounds and I was feeling very depressed about it because I thought I was doing a pretty good job of following the plan.

It was with some trepidation that I went to my Thursday weigh-in tonight... and was pleasantly surprised to find that I had lost the three pounds I had gained - Yea!! So it's just a reminder to myself (and anyone else who is struggling like me) that persistence pays off. I'm sure I'll hit another plateau at some point along the way but I will just have to keep pushing through =)

Reflections on the Election

I just want to preface this post by saying that the feelings expressed here have been weighing heavily on me throughout this election process and most especially the past couple of days since the votes were tallied. I sincerely hope that no one is offended by my opinions but I have a need to express what I am feeling and this is my personal blog created for this express purpose. It is my First Amendment right and I choose to exercise it. We are all entitled to our own opinions and I acknowledge that many of you may not agree with me and I respect that… I hope you will respect my right to say it anyway.


I have to admit that I am disappointed in the outcome of our recent election. More than anything, I am disappointed in the vast number of american voters who, in my opinion, have shown an inability to think for themselves, to research facts and separate them from fiction and exaggeration, who believe everything the liberal media tells them.


But the biggest disappointment to me is that the greatest fear about this election became a reality: racism reared its ugly head and tipped the results in its favor. If you look at the hispanic vote, the white vote, the asian vote, you will see that they were split between the two major candidates – this shows me that these people may not have agreed on the issues but they stood up for the side they believed in. However, according to the exit polls, the African-American vote was 95% for Obama. That proves to me that their votes were primarily RACIST and not based on issues at all. Racism is discrimination based on race – any race, any kind of discrimination – and it’s wrong, every single time. Case in point, I heard that on the Howard Stern Show they took the policies of McCain and credited them to Obama then presented them to people in Harlem. Overwhelmingly, these people agreed that these issues were what they voted for – some even said that Sarah Palin was going to make a great vice-president! It is apparent to me that these people voted for Obama because he was black – not because he was representing the issues and ideals they stood for. The color of a person's skin is not an appropriate reason to elect the president of the most powerful nation on the face of the earth.


In my opinion, the socialist agenda of the Democratic Party is the exact opposite of the American Dream. The American Dream tells us that if we work hard, we can achieve our goals, that we will be rewarded for our efforts. I see the Democrat Liberals as self-appointed Robin Hoods who steal from the rich and give to the poor – a poor who, in too many cases, make a living off the hard work of others in a parasitical manner. There is no incentive for those receiving handouts and free rides to do anything but take what is handed to them while the rest of the hardworking taxpayers carry the burden. That’s not the American Dream… it’s the American Nightmare!


My vote was based on choosing the candidate who best represented what I feel is right for our country – not the most charismatic person or the person who had the best rhetoric and especially not the person who had a certain skin color – but the person who had the right course of action. Anyone who knows me knows how patriotic I am. I cannot sing “America the Beautiful” without crying like a baby. I stand with my hand over my heart and sing along whenever I hear our national anthem, “The Star-Spangled Banner.” I have stood in airports to applaud our returning military. I send letters and care packages to our servicemen overseas. I love God and country with my whole heart. And I am proud that we are a country of opportunity and a place where anyone can be anything they choose to be. I do not care that Barack Obama is a black man but I do care that he has laid out a course that I believe will be detrimental to this great nation. Please do not misunderstand me... I am not withholding my support for our new President-Elect; in fact, quite the opposite: I feel that we all need to pray – pray with sincere hearts – for this man, our new leader, to be blessed with insight and courage to make decisions that will strengthen and heal our country. May God bless America!