Friday, July 31, 2009

Playing in Mom's Garden (again)

Ahhh...excuses to get out of the house AWAY from the stress and monotony of packing! (have I mentioned before how I hate packing?)

Yesterday, I went over to my parents' house to "play" in my Mom's garden. On the 4th of July, I started putting in these wood discs (cut up from stumps) in Mom's garden path. Before, there was only dirt there, and plants and weeds would grow in it (and then people wouldn't use the path). So I took it upon my self to help Mom put in a rustic "sidewalk" through the path using those stump pieces.

Well, I didn't end up finishing it on the yesterday I worked on it until the previously cut discs were used up. But the problem was, I didn't have enough to finish the path! Enter Dad with the chainsaw!
The stump he's cutting up was one of three stumps I had at my wedding. We used them as a "table" for the unity candle...
We'd originally obtained the stumps from Mom & Dad's neighbors across the street, who took down a tree in their front yard the spring before we got married. I'd had the idea to use tree stumps as a part of my rustic, celtic, medieval theme for the wedding... so when we were watching the neighbors take down their tree, we asked if we could have three pieces of it to use for the wedding. Dad leveled them off with the chainsaw (I think that's where the older discs came from) and we used them at the wedding.
The stumps have been laying in Mom's garden for the 3 years CJ and I have been married. Now they'll lay in Mom's garden in a different way!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Crafty Girls' Afternoon Out

A couple weeks ago I took my friend Rachel's two older boys to the local library for a class/demonstration making "goo". Well, their younger sister felt left out that she wasn't going, and so her mother and I promised her that she'd get to go on her own special outing with me. So when I got an email from AC Moore this week about their free summer "Make & Takes", I thought it was the perfect opportunity to take Maggie.

The Make & Take craft this week was making a pompom ladybug...

Then we wandered around the store for a little bit and tried on foam princess tiaras...

I think she had a lot of fun. And I enjoyed spending one-on-one girl time with her too!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Crazy Kitten

Remember Sammy from the farm? Cute innocent little kitty, right?

But under the cute exterior is a cat full of mischief! He likes to "attack" Leon, one of the other cats (I'm surprised Leon stands for it and doesn't teach the little guy a lesson)...

He even stalks the chickens! He did end up chasing this one. Again, he was lucky that object of his ambush didn't turn and teach him lesson! And lucky as well that the rooster wasn't around!

All in all though, he is a really cute kitten...

Monday, July 27, 2009

"What Are We Doing Today Mom?"

I just found this cute blog...What Are We Doing Today Mom? While I do not have kids of my own, a lot of my friends do, so I am around young kids a lot...and plus I am really just a big kid at heart!

My favorite post so far is about making play dynamite with foam plumbing insulation tubes, red duct tape and some rope for a fuse, and playing "dynamite tag"...
"you throw dynamite at each other and if you get hit/blown up you are it and get to throw the dynamite. It is awesome. Like dodge ball but with explosives..."
I laughed out loud when I read that. It reminds me of when my brother was in charge of thinking up games for the kids at church on Wednesday nights. This seems like the kind of thing he'd think up.

I also like her idea of "playing movie theater" and making tickets...

Friday, July 24, 2009

Just Keep Packing...

Here's a glimpse into my world lately...the reason my posts have been less frequent...

I've been PACKING.

Our closing date for the new house is in less than a week (next Thursday). So I've been doing almost nothing but packing lately (except for when my lovely hubby forces me to take a break for the sake of my own sanity). My creativity has been very limited due to the fact that I'm focusing on packing up my craft room...henceforth I'm packing up my craft supplies.

The picture above shows a box I just packed, and that weird "Free Your Mind" collage thing on the top is my high school sketch book (I'm such a sentimental PACK RAT!). Too bad I just taped up the box or else I could take some pictures of some of the pages for some blog fodder. Oh well. Be patient with me. I will be making monsters again as soon as we get moved in. I really miss making my monsters.

Next weekend we will take what I've packed so far out to the house (kitchen, bathroom and craft room), and then during the week I will be staying at the new house with Luna, doing some unpacking while CJ packs up the remaining stuff at the apartment.

Ever get that feeling when you've been doing something for awhile...feeling that although you seem to have spent SO much time on this task, you've really not made much progress? I kind of feel that way right now. Although I've made a signifigant dent in the craft room and am seeing the light at the end of the tunnel. I think once we actually get some of the furniture out of the apartment it will feel like we're really moving.

I should stop procrastinating and go back to packing.

~sings like Dory the fish from "Finding Nemo"~ "Just keep packing...just keep packing...just keep packing packing packing...

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Modeling Again

I had another day today where my husband "kicked me out" of the house for the day in order to force me to forget about the stress of moving/packing and to have some fun (is this going to be a weekly Tuesday thing until we get moved?) And so after wandering Old Navy and JoAnne's, I went for a drive and went over to my friend Ashley's house. She's into photography, and she likes using me for a model (I'm told I'm photogenic)...and she's been wanting to do another photo shoot lately. So we went out in the field by her house and took some picures...

She took a series of photos of me laying in the grass. the overcast sky was too bright for me to keep my eyes open, so I kept them closed (which she said was okay). As we reviewed the pictures later, I was joking with her that I look dead...but really, I think I kind of look too content to be dead. Sleeping maybe?

You can go check out her photography blog to see the rest of the pictures.

She mentions that I look like Snow White with my light skin and dark hair. Oh!...I should have had an apple for these pictures! That would have been perfect!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Day Off For Painting

As I've probably mentioned in previous entries, my husband and I are buying our first house. The closing will likely be the last week of July, and I have been concentrating on packing up our belongings...which I'm finding to be quite a tedious task. I've been feeling very "blah" lately, and I realized that it might be because I am putting my creative pursuits on the back burner...since I need to be packing most of my supplies up. I shared this thought with my husband last night, and he "ordered" me to take a day off from get out of the house and go paint (since if I'm in the house, I am too tempted to work on things and stress out about packing and moving).
It was very refreshing to be able to do this. Sometimes I just need someone to tell me to take a break (and I'm glad my hubby is able to be that someone!). So here are the results of my "art outing" today...

I'm very impressed with myself for doing this painting of a Canadian goose from life (even though those darn geese kept moving!)

I went to Charlotte Beach on Lake Ontario. Unfortunately, the water is not very clean on this beach, especially when it's windy or has been storming (we've been gettting lots of rainstorms lately, and today was EXTREMELY windy). You know how when the waves break, they're supposed to be white?...well today they were GREEN! Toxic sludge-looking green! Eeeew! They had an announcement over loudspeakers that said the water was closed to swimming or even walking along the shoreline. I love swimming, but even I would not complain about not being allowed to swim in that!

I left the toxic sludge coloring out of my painting...

I ended up packing up after painting for a couple hours due to the high winds that were blowing sand into my eyes. I drove around for a bit, trying to find another peaceful spot near the water. I felt like a wandering gypsy today (especially with my sarong-skirt, indian print blanket, and turquoise headscarf that I was wearing to keep my hair out of my face).
I ended up taking the Ontario Parkway to Long Pond Road and stopped at a marina in Greece, where I did these...
A very Impressionistic looking tree...

Same tree, but with imaginary colors...

Playing with colors...

A simple still-life of my cigar box paintbox...

Monday, July 13, 2009

Sammy, Sonya, and Taffy

These are the newest additions to my friends' farm. Sammy the kitten, Sonya the goat (brown), and Taffy the baby goat (white). I went out to the goat pen and Sammy was sitting on the fence in true cat-like fashion (He's still so little! How did he get way up there?)...and so I decided to take some pictures...

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Signs, Signs, Everywhere the Signs...

I found this book at Barnes & Noble when I went there with my mom & grandma last week. I thought I'd share some of the pages with signs that struck me kind of funny...

Beware getting hit by lightning while doing the limbo!
Oh...those elderly people are gonna get ya!

... Those ferocious llamas too!

Beware of people fleeing the city!

Monday, July 6, 2009

Summer Reading..."Letters To Jenny"

I recently finished a book called “Letters to Jenny” by Piers Anthony.
"Letters To Jenny" is a compilation of letters from the author to a 12 year old girl who was hit by a drunk driver and was in a coma. The girl (Jenny) was a big fan of Mr. Anthony’s “Xanthe” novels, and her mother wrote to him asking him to write a letter to Jenny. The one letter turned into at least one a week for over a year.

Jenny comes out of her coma relatively early in the book, but has very limited movement. She can't speak or write, but can move her eyes and her right index finger. The book ends after a year of letters (February 1989 - February 1990), and at the time the book was published (1993), Jenny was still mostly paralyzed, and I don't know if she ever fully recovered.
It was an interesting read. I don't usually pick up non-fiction books unless they have to do with art, crafts, or home decor...but I glimpsed the author's name in the non-fiction section of the library. I thought that maybe the book had been misplaced, but upon reading the description on the back of the book, I was intrigued.
Piers Anthony was a popular fantasy novelist in the 80’s/early 90's, but I only discovered his Xanthe novels a few years ago when my brother gave me a boxed set of the first three Xanthe novels..."A Spell For Chameleon", "The Source Of Magic", and "Castle Roogna". They sat on my shelf for awhile until I decided to read them, and ended up liking them. Until I read "Letters to Jenny", I didn't realize that Piers Anthony had written a lot more Xanthe novels than just those three!
My next book I was going to read was going to be "Eclipse", the third installment of the "Twilight" saga...but CJ flew through reading "New Moon" this weekend (he's a genius, and a fast reader...and had lots of time to read with the holiday weekend), so I am letting him hijack "Eclipse" and am going to see if I can find "Isle of View" (the Xanthe book Piers wrote while he was writing to Jenny, that has a character named after her in it).

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Orange Peel Jello Cups

This is a little bit of deliciousness my mom came up with yesterday...

Yes, that is Jello...and yes, it is in an orange peel.

I'm no sure what made her think to do this besides having a lot of oranges that she didn't want to go bad. She made fresh orange juice and then scooped out the half peel and used it as a cup to serve Jello. She used strawberry Jello (made with Mountain Dew instead of the cold water...which gives it a little extra zip).

You have to set the orange halves into a muffin tin first in order to pour the Jello in, then put the muffin tin in the fridge to set the Jello. When the Jello is set, pull the tray out and serve!

4th of July, 2009

My husband's birthday just happens to be the 4th of July. Poor guy...birthday overshadowed by a holiday. That's probably why he isn't too into having big parties for his birthday. But me and my family are! we threw him a small party yesterday at my parents' house...

Earlier in the afternoon, I helped Mom with her garden...

...and so did Luna! She was actually being really helpful, since we were trying to dig up the dirt anyway! (Dig Luna! Dig!)

My parents have traditionally thrown a big 4th of July bash in past years, but in recent years it's calmed down to a simple get-together of having just a couple people over, eating, hanging out around the fire pit, and watching the fireworks. My parents are a stonesthrow away from the town park where they set off the fireworks every year, so there are two options: stay in their front yard to watch, or walk down to the park to see them close up. Dad and CJ always stay home...Mom and I always walk down.

We found out that Luna does NOT like fireworks!

Friday, July 3, 2009

A Couple Days at Grandma's...

I know it's been over a week since my last entry, but nothing really interesting happened last week. And I've been gone for the past 2 days. My mom called me on Monday to tell me she was going to visit her mother (my grandmother) and asked if I wanted to come too. Well sure!..packing can wait while I visit Grandma!

My mom works for BOCES with special ed. kids and the cigar box thing was a craft project they did this year. Apparantly it's a project that's been around for awhile. I told my husband about it and he said "Oh yeah, I've done that!" It's really simple...all you do is
  1. tear pieces of masking tape and stick them onto a cigar box (making sure they overlap and the edges are pressed down)
  2. when the whole box is covered with pieces of masking tape, you dab shoe polish onto it (not the kind in a can, the liquid kind that is kind of like a bingo stamper).
  3. wait for the shoe polish to dry and voila!...a faux leather box!

On Tuesday afternoon/evening, Grandma had a birthday party to go to for one of her friends, so Mom and I decided to drive up to Inlet to see what was left of "the Camp".

Poor Luna...this was her first time to the Adirondacks. She never even got to spend any time at Camp.

Remember the movie "Carrie"? At the end when the house had burnt down and the girl was coming to set flowers in front of the for sale sign?...then Carrie's hand comes up and grabs her?

Mom had a rubber hand that had been on the dashboard of her car for 5 years or so and was starting to discolor on the back. She had been meaning to get rid of it anyway, so we semi-ceremoniously left it sticking up under the No Trespassing sign! My family usually deals with grief with laughter. We were giggling like teenage girls setting this up and taking pictures.
Then Mom and I went to 7th Lake to take Luna swimming (I'll put the video on my YouTube channel)

Rinsing the sand off out feet and off our sandals...

Beautiful mountains and sunset...

Then we had dinner in Old Forge (about 10-15 minutes away from Inlet). The deer in Old Forge don't mind the cars or civilization...they just mosey along like they were in the woods. I have video of that too.