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Saturday, December 1, 2012

Winter Gift Exchange

I began following a WAAAAAAAY cute blog about a year ago called Craftaholics Anonymous Linda is a very sweet and HIGHLY creative lady. She has a great gift/talent for creating some AmAzInG things for her home, kids, husband, and others. I have tried some of her crafts she posts and I love reading about all her cool projects! One thing I have read about since following her blog are the Gift Exchanges she puts together. I am sure it is a HUGE undertaking but, none the less, she does it and it is pretty cool all that is created for it. I thought it would be so fun to try it and so this year I decided to actually do it! I was so scared and intimidated. I kept thinking "What if she (the lady I make the stuff for) doesn't like what I made?", "What if it doesn't match her decore and she chucks it, or decides to give it away because it's not good enough?" I seriously stressed out about it so much I almost backed out. But I am not a giver-upper! I took the time to look up some other crafts to get new ideas, I went to different craft stores around my state, I asked my gift-ee many questions about herself and I did some additonal freaking out along the way! But my great sisters Celeste and Lisa, and my mom all shared alot of faith in my and continually told me I could do it! They were always telling me I do a good job and kept reminding me that I love crafting and have cool ideas....that helped me a lot! My first craft came from a picture of something I saw that my gift-ee posted that she liked....HOLD THE PHONE! I didn't tell ya who I was paired up with. Her name is Julie and she is a sweet heart! I was lucky to be paired up with her. And how cool is this, her daughter's name begins with the same letter that my name does! I know, I'm cheesy! But I think it's cool! So back to my first craft! Julie showed a cute picture of a letter S dressed up and hanging on a door. I decided to do something similar to it but add a few twists and personal touches. Juie said that her favorite colors are Pink (and if I remember right, hot pink was the shade she liked), black, clear, and BLING! I thought, how fun would it be to make and S (in honor of her daughter) and decorate it the colors that she likes. I had read once about a craft that someone did where they took a wooden letter and wrapped string around it. I thought, I should do that...but use ribbon instead! So I bought 4 roles of thin ribbon...instead of wide ribbon! I found some blingy pink gems and some pretty cool shinny pink ribbon! It was NOT at all like I thought it would be! There are so many curves on an S! Ha ha, like me! Here's how it went for making the crafts!
Making the "Love" sign was way fun! I got some ideas from a local company called The Wood Connection. LOVE THAT PLACE! I am working a project I got there, it is going to be really cute! You'll have to check back to see it!
Cute huh?!
Don't worry, I'll show you what this was turned into! I of course had to get my moms help with it. Her sewing machine Hates me...and yes, that is with a capital T! It never works when I use it. Something always goes wrong. I have wanted a sewing machine for myself for so many years so I could try to sew and do fun stuff, but NOOOO! I will have to wait until I get my own place, there is no room here for another one! Ahhh, snap!
This is the S I was talking about! Yes, I used small ribbon on it and LOTS of ModPodge! It was fun, but the top and bottom of the S were really hard to do. It was becoming impossible to get the ribbon on right so it flowed and looked cool. I had to think of something else and I actually think the two different textures I ended up with made it look really cool! I want to try it on another project I have been working on for about 2 years! I ended up wrapping the ribbon on the middle section and then spraying it with clear sealant and then painting the ends with black paint. I then added some embelishments, one of which was the Love sign! It made it so cute. Then to make it hang-able I added some wide bright pink ribbon. It turned out so cute! I want to do another one! Here is what it looks like at the UPS store just before it was packaged to be sent away! Sorry the picture wasn't very good. It was taken with my phone and it was dark, the lighting was pathetic, and it was on an off red color!
Doesn't the Love sign at the bottom just make it look so cute?! I think so! I just hope Julie likes it. It took me all my Thanksgiving break to get done! I bet you're wondering what we did with the pink and zebra striped material, well we worked on making it a rice pack! I don't know about you but I love having one of those at my finger tips so that if some time during the month I am in pain I can use it, or after a good workout I need to put ice or heat on my sore muscles or joints I have something I can throw in the microwave and heat up or pull out of the freezer. As of lately I have been using a heating pad or rice pack to heat my bed up...I have been freezing at night...and it isn't even snowy outside. But it helps so much! Here is a picture of the S, the rice pack, and another gift I had made previously to the others that I added. I am sort of a sucker for Patriotism and I had made a cute wreath out of balloons, pins, and a straw wreath! I added some burlap for a strap to hang it with and those that came to my house loved it...some even wanted to take it home! But I had to tell them no!
Again, sorry about the sad quality of the picture! But you get the jist! It was fun and I am glad I could do it! I am thinking of doing the one in the summer! I might even have more time to come up with some other things to do! Yea! Here is another picture of the wreath! It's not the best picture, but you can see more of the details!
I hope you have enjoyed reading my blog! I seriously had some major fun doing this Gift Exchange. It was a great way to releave some stress and get my creative juices flowing! I would love some comments on what you think and if you have suggestions on the crafts...things I could have done differently or whatever, or if you have ideas on other crafts I can do I would love it! I love comments, please leave some! Merry Christmas!

Saturday, November 10, 2012

What We've Been Blessed With!

Ever since I arrived at school yesterday and through to today we have been blessed with an abundance of.....SNOW! I have been looking forward to this for a long time! Our winter here in Utah last year was not what I would call "Successful". We had very little snow and rain during winter, let alone in spring! Our Spring was drab. We didn't get much water, which for Utah is very much needed due to this state being a desert. With those two things not working out in our favor our summer was HORRIBLE to say the least. We had multiple fires, many of which took out peoples homes and there were some fatalities. Summer was not fun! But many of the fires that were started were not caused by Mother Nature...it was Human caused. I'm not going to get into that garbage, it annoys me! Anyway, so the glorious gift we have gotten has brightened me up and make me all sorts of excited for Thanksgiving! To me Thanksgiving just isn't Thanksgiving unless you have snow! For those who might read this and don't get snow for Thanksgiving I am trully sorry! I LOVE IT...well, except for driving in it and walking on the ice! I just thoroughly love how it makes things quiet and peaceful, and everything is covered in white. The air gets cleaned too! So I have to remind my students NOT to pick up the snow and eat it due to the germs and nasty stuff in it! And of course we have to talk about the yellow snow and making snow balls. But the one thing they love to do is make snow angels! It is so funny to watch how excited they get! So without further adeu, here are some photos of what I saw when I woke this morning...at 10am! No mocking!
This is the view from the kitchen window. That is why it isn't the best photo! But you can see how snowy it is! While I was shooting that photo I was thinking about going out and doing a snow angel...but I wasn't dressed for it!
This is another picture of the backyard! Isn't it so cool? I love how much snow we got! And it is still falling, which is why I now have my gloves on. My hands are freezing as I type in my cold basement! Brrrrrr!
This is again another shot of the backyard. In the corner there we use to have a HUGE pine tree. It was seriously MASSIVE! This past summer we had it cut down because it was getting side heavy due to the stupid power company cutting the branches on one side and leaving the other side with all the branches...UMMMM, dumb! With strong enough winds that things would have fallen on my house or our neighbors to the south. That would not have been cool. So we had an adventure getting it cut down. Don't worry, no one was hurt in the removal, not even the stupid magpies! Now we have an open area for the raspberries to take over. It is pre-mo dirt with all the wood chips and fertilizer! I bet I could grow a date in there...hmmmmm!
This is our deck (it's pathetic! We need to get it fixed). Look how much snow we have! And our clothes line (some say that's old fashioned...but our clothes and sheets smell so good when we dry them outside and it saves on bills) have quite a bit sitting on them! Yea!
This is our front step. The pumpkins are under our eves and still got snowed on. The pedistal has a random frog statue my nieces love. They are goign to miss it until the snow melts! The next few pictures are of the frontal area of my house. I haven't had a chance to shoot pictures of snow in a while and blog about it. I have missed it. I hope you enjoy them!
Yes those are Halloween lights! I'm not in the mood to take them down. They give off a nice warm orange glow at night, perfect for Thanksgiving!
That is A LOT of snow! Soooo cool! I want to give a special shout out to my my nieghbors the Dugdale's and Thompson's for snow blowing our sidewalks in the front! You guys are very great neighbors! And a bigger shout out to my Mom, Celeste, and Lisa. Thank you for SHOVELING the driveway and cleaning off the cars (while I was asleep in my nice warm bed)! You guys are so very special to me and I love you with all my young girl heart! Have a great weekend! Stay safe and warm! I love comments, hope to hear from ya!