Monday, December 23, 2013

Happy DO Year --- a recap.

For three years now - I've chosen a yearly focus word.

I has been so very effective to help me focus for the year ahead. And much easier for me to keep than an entire list of resolutions.

The words have been easy choices at times and more difficult at times.

"DO" was the choice for 2013, and it was an easy word to decide on and to implement.

And boy have I DONE.

I've submitted work for a design team call and been selected for the GlobeCraft and Piccolo design team for 2014.

I crocheted 10 baby blankets (and made a huge dent in my yarn stash)

I made several additional baby gifts.

I finished many projects that have been languishing in my UFO pile for WAY to long.

I have read.

I have exercised.

I have eaten better.

I have made decisions that have affected my life for the better - hard decisions that hurt - but rather than stringing them along, I buckled down and made them .

I posted a short story that I wrote many years ago - and now am working with a college student who wants to go into book illustration as her career. She wants to illustrate this and then lets see if we can at least self publish a few copies.

I sang in the church Christmas Cantata. (Including a solo that left me shaking in my shoes)

I've lived beautifully.

I've learned so much.

I've counted blessings. (Thank you Ann Voskamp for the pattern I use)

I've paid off several debts - and made a huge dent in some others - and I have put away a bit of money as well.

I have also taken the advice - DO unto others as you would have them DO unto you. I've reached out and shared and helped and loved and prayed and encouraged.

As 2013 winds down - I am reflective about the year about to pass and trying to lock in on my word for 2014. I hope for the next word to be as effective as this one was.

My life is beautiful --- and my life includes the word DO. Having that word be my focus has made this life and love even more beautiful.

Happy DO year 2013 ----- let's see what 2014 brings.

Find more inspiration over at the ONE WORD 365 site. It is amazing what we can do if we focus.

Friday, December 13, 2013

tell me the stories ....

We make nativities. 
The current ones get lots of road miles.
He cuts and sands.
I trace.
He wood burns.
I paint.
He stains. 
We sell. But honestly, the ones we give to our littles are the ones that mean the most to me. 

The story of the first one I made is at the link. 

We gifted this little one with a set this year. 
She spread it out and Dad sent us this picture.

My hope is that she will play and really learn the story. 
Then teach it to her little brother. 
And so forth and so on. 
Much like my girls did. 

(at the end of this post is a fabulous active way to use this for advent devotions)

Then I get this picture via text. 

"Rebecca said this is "Jofus" I said you mean 
Joseph...."nope, Jofus" "

How cute - and if she is playing with it, there will be learning occuring.

Merry Christmas.


I cannot take credit for this idea, but it is a wonderful one. 

A friend of mine uses their wood block nativity along with some other props for their Advent readings. 

The various figures are placed around the house with the numbered envelopes.
Each night the search out the correct envelope and have the devotional. 
For instance 
Night one - the angel comes to Mary.
Night two - The angel comes to "Jofus" 
Night three - Joseph and Mary together read the scroll. 

All the while the empty manger sits on the table by the tree. 

For the twenty five days leading up to Christmas. The story unfolds and the characters in the story slowly make the trip through the house to Bethlehem. 

On Christmas Eve, Baby Jesus appears in the manger. 
On Christmas Day - before the gift frenzy begins - the Wise Men bring their gifts to the new Baby. 

A beautiful tradition for the kids. 

If you choose to adapt this idea for your Christmas, please leave a comment here, I would love to hear your stories. 

Much love and a Very Merry Christmas to all of you. 

Thursday, December 12, 2013

inspired - and given

So there are these friends.

New baby boy. (the baby brother of little miss rebecca - she is the owner of the butterfly artwork)

I needed a gift.

Happy DO Year underway.

Stash usage is a serious part of the DO idea.

And So here is the next giftie ----

I stalked mom's pinterest boards and discovered ------ the following pin was my inspiration

Miss Jill McDonald makes beautiful handcut illustrations that she then sells these wonderful prints of.

Being an artist myself, I twisted the idea into my own version of the artwork.

I knew little Chips' room was going to be blue, so I gathered several blue themed scrapbook papers and set up my CRICUT machine. I cut the letters - attempting to use a variety that I could mix and mingle.

I painted the background of my canvas pale blue --- latex from a miss-mix shelf at Lowe's.

After I cut my letters I randomized the lines and laid them out on the canvas.

I taped off the edges to keep my spacing fairly accurate.  Hours later, I had Mod Podged all the letters into place.

I peeled off the tape and decided it was a little bland for my liking.

So I grabbed some blue glimmer mist. Spritz away.

I then took my heat gun and dried the mist. (to keep the letters from peeling up at all)

I discovered that the ModPodge bubbled with the heatgun and it left this awesome texture on the canvas. (I call that kind of discovery a Happy Accident ---- although every now and then it can be an OH SH*&)

After the spritzing and blow drying - I sprayed the entire thing with clear spray sealer.

And called it DONE.

I love it ---- I hope mom and little Chip love it too.

Monday, December 09, 2013

The Design Team Official intro ....

Take off over here 

Too meet the lovely ladies who are making up the Globecraft and Piccolo design team. 

I am in awe of being one of them. 

I cannot wait to see what inspiring ideas this group presents to us all. 

Also - take off for shopping too

2014 looks like an inspiring year to come. 

Thursday, December 05, 2013

On wings of love.......

So I have lots of sweet littles in my life. 

Rebecca Peterson is one of them.

Several months back - little Missy announced to us that she was going to be a BIG SISTER. 

I stalked her mama's pinterest for ideas to make a gift for the new baby. 
(that post in a few days) 

While I was mulling that over, 
I started on a little giftie for Rebecca.
(BIG SISTER had to get a gift too) 

I sent her dad a text and it was determined that pink butterflies would be the ticket. 

I painted a 12x12 canvas green.

Then punched sixteen circles.

Some glue and patience later they are laid out on the canvas. 

Then I wanted dimensional butterflies and I had these great sequins in the right shape. 

I punched assorted paper ones too. 

I bent the sequins for dimension.

stacked them on the paper shapes
(see the beads) 

I strung the beads on light gauge wire. 

Wrapped to the back to secure.

Because I KNOW someone will ask, here's how I bent the sequins using the back side of my xacto knife blade. 

After making all the little butterflies, I moved them around and decided on the layout I liked.

If you are ever around me creating - there is that moment that I refer too as "look - it sings"

More glue - this time a clear drying tacky glue.

The finished artwork

I likes this one a LOT. 

The full front view. 

and ------ 

A sweetie little missy enjoying opening her present.

Monday, December 02, 2013

here's the newsflash

I've wanted to design for a company for a long long time. 

I saw that GlobeCraft and Piccolo was looking for design team members. 

Being that my word for the year is DO.

I clicked and linked.

And waited. 

And over the Thanksgiving long weekend, I received an invitation to be a part of a lovely group of talented ladies. 

I readily accepted the invitation.

I will be a design team member starting in 2014. 

I am so excited to work with these products and the ladies on the team. 

I do hope all of you will follow all of the goodies the entire team comes up with. 

Linky Goodies. 

I am so excited to be a part of this.

Watch for more fun updates soon.