Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Crafting if it Kills Me

I told you I would be crafting if it killed me this week. I actually had yesterday morning and early afternoon to myself. After I got the kids off to school I plopped myself in front of the TV and watched HGTV while stitching. I did not get out of my pajamas and take a shower until 10am. I wanted to get the stitchery done. I was bound and determined to finish this simple little one. It was a free pattern by Betty Dekat (Primitivebettys).

I have a few more I'd like to do, but I need more thread...

Then after I watched a little more TV I decided I better not take a nap and get to a project I wanted to try. Now I don't know about you, but when I look at some of the other blogs out there at their projects they look absolutely perfect. Well, I'm here to tell you I don't always get perfect and I'm am OK to show you when it doesn't turn out. LOL. I fail, figure out what I did wrong, and redo. Then tell you what not to do.

Here we have some molds (I just love this cute rabbit one I picked up really cheap), an old candle (yummy blueberry) that didn't burn right, and a little coffee ground, cinnamon, clove mixture. Now I think I read somewhere where you spray the molds with some something like PAM. So that is what I did then sprinkled my mixture onto the grease. I am guessing it makes the wax come out better.

Next I melted some of the wax down using and old coffee can and a double broiler method...

Now, I should've tried one instead of all three at once just to be sure it would turn out. You know me Miss Impatient. I did put the prim mixture in the two that are the same. The other one I didn't. This is where I believe I made my mistake next. I put them in the freezer to set quicker. MMMMMMM... I probably won't do that again. They did come out of the molds easier, but it also added moisture to it with the grease. The tops where the grease and prim mixture took longer to dry and didn't come out perfect.

As you can see the bunny has a shiny butt. LOL. If you look closely the tart to the backs top looks terrible. It is flat and of course the wax didn't get down clear to the bottom. Either my grease was too thick or my mixture was to thick or both. I'm not really sure. Maybe I won't use instant coffee grounds either.

LOL hidden so you can't see. This morning they are dry but still look terrible. LOL.

So lessons learned. I still have a bit more wax so I will probably try again this weekend.
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Monday, February 22, 2010

Where Have I Been????

I hate only being able to post once a week. I have a lot on my plate for the rest of this month and next. Let's see since I posted last Monday... Tuesday I worked 14 hours, Wednesday I worked 14 hours, Thursday I worked 13 hours (and had a meltdown in the evening), Friday I was in class for 8 hours, and Saturday I worked 14 hours. This is Sunday night as I type this and I have grocery shopped and done laundry all day. (Of course by the time this posts today I will be back at work for another 14 hour day.) In between Tuesday and Friday of last week I finished up my swap for Char and got it sent out. I also worked on a doll(which I will show you in a minute) and started a new stitchery today. I barely have time to breathe and this coming week doesn't look much better, but by golly I'm gonna craft if it kills me. It is my only sanity. LOL. Oh but I do have cake too... WHAT did you say cake???? LOL Steve made his very first pineapple upside down cake today. I helped a little bit, but he did most of the work. So I think I'm set for a few days.

Like I said I have been so busy and gone from home a lot lately. Have you just ever had a feeling of being overwhelmed and had a meltdown? I just lost it when I came home Thursday night. It all hit me when my son called and said he couldn't do his Math and needed help. It was already 7:45 pm and I was still at work until 9. I had not had any EMS calls all day and here I sit not being able to help him. Soooooo frustrating. The chief just doesn't understand how hard it is for a single Mom to stay until 9pm and still be able to make sure homework is done and checked. My housework isn't getting done either... if I'm not there to yell lol the kids don't do it either. Anyway, I get home dirty dishes in the sink, a load of towels needs washed, the kitchen needs cleaned, the dining room table is the catch all, and I find the paper telling me school pictures were that day and I didn't even know. Poor Steve got the wrath... you know the sarcastic nasty "Don't worry I got it don't get up off the couch" look and "I got it" speech. He was kind enough to watch the kids while I was at work. I just couldn't help the cat claws, pointy teeth, red eyes, and roar of a lion that night... oh and let's not forget the crying in frustration "I hate my job" speech. My poor daughter was cleaning her room at 9:30pm because I couldn't even see the floor through her clothes. My son went to bed early so I had to get him up at 5:30 the next morning just so I could help him with his Math. It is just so frustrating. Yes, I have to have the class for my paramedic card so there is no getting out of that and unfortunately I need the money right now too. Steve and I have had no time to talk as when I come home I am too tired and fall asleep while he's talking. LOL. But, I just keep thinking it is only temporary and soon I will be done and hopefully the temperature will warm up so that I can work outside. I think a lot of my problem is I have cabin fever with all this snow. Well, now that I have that off my chest I will show you my doll I am working on.

The doll was already made. My Mom picked it up at Pat Catan's maybe for $.50 and said here I though you could use it. Her dress (which is hard to see) is actually part of a sheet I just picked up from the Goodwill. It was white with blue flowers.
I coffee stained everything up and put another light blue sash around her waist. This was originally going to be one of Char's gifts, but I decided against it. Now that I look at her I think I'm gonna grubby up her dress a bit more. Anyway...

OK this picture is better.

I also took the time to frame this stitchery I did many years ago. My Mom found it at her house and brought it over. The frame was a Goodwill one that I painted with burnt umber thanks to Lisa's use of the same color. I hung it above my linen rack in the hall. Yes the stitchery is crooked in the frame... I can't get it right. Not sure if I cut it uneven or the preprinted lines for the stitchery were printed cockeyed. Like I said I did this way back in high school. I also didn't stain this one. Not sure why I just didn't. LOL.

I will leave you with a smile... Steve always cracks me up. shhhh... he'll kill me if he knows I posted this. LOL Yes the strings behind his head are the sweat pant strings. LOL. Haven't we all seen the older men with their checkered polyester pants hiked up to the chest???? Well.... Steve is well on his way..... LOL.

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Monday, February 15, 2010

The Swap that Almost Wasn't

Yikes!!!! It's been a week since I posted last. Not much exciting happening around here. Snow Snow and more snow expected today through tomorrow. I am so ready for Spring.

Anyway I participated in Char's You're So Trashy Swap. In this swap we had to take three trash i.e. Goodwill things and remake them into something else. I was so excited and worried since I would be Char's partner. If you don't know Char make sure you follow the link above. She comes up with some of the best ideas. The things she makes and the redo's she has done are fabulous. I'm like how can I compete with her. LOL. I am still working on hers because I have started many things and thought No I want to make something else. So, Char I'm working on it. LOL.

Steve and I were out and about Saturday when we came home I saw the mail truck drive behind my house. That's funny I thought. They never go to the back of the house since my mailbox is at the street. They just drive up and drop off my mail. Char had sent me an email to tell me her package was on it's way, so I was expecting it anytime. Usually they leave it on the front porch. So Steve pulled in the drive and we waited for the mail truck to pull around. I had put a bill in the mailbox on Friday and it was not picked up. I didn't think it was a post office holiday. I shrugged it off figuring she would pick it up Saturday. NOOOOOOO... So I met her in the driveway with the bill, which will now be late. She said "I left you a note on your back door from the Postmaster that I will NOT deliver your mail until you remove the snow from in front of your mailbox." I said even though it's ice from the plow and I can not shovel it you won't deliver my mail. She said "Nope I am not going to get stuck again like I have other places. Oh and I left today's mail out back for you, but won't do it again." Grrrrr... first of all she left it on my air conditioning unit which is not sheltered and is open to the wind. Second of all my neighbor in the unit next to me didn't get one. So Steve went out and tried to dig a little out to make her happy.

The good news is I got my swap from Char.

Woohoo!!!! I can't wait to see what she came up with. Ignore the mess I haven't been home much to clean.

First things first was a wonderful note explaining a little about each item. And yes Char I did really enjoy this swap even though I need to finish yours. LOL.

First of all was the beautiful Black Eyed Susan stitchery made with a bed sheet and wool from the Goodwill. Yes it already has a home...

Little does she know I was perusing the internet on something to make out of a jar for her and up pops her directions on how to make and Americana jar candle. LOL well I certainly could not make her something she already knew how to do. So to my surprise she sent me this... I absolutely LOVE it and now I will have to look up the directions on how to make it myself. If you can't tell it is an oil burning light. She took some prim sludge (this is a good thing not bad lol) put it on the jar and then placed an old looking label on and sealed it. I can't wait to buy some oil and try it out.

And lastly she bought some old books and recovered them with homespun. I have thought about trying this but never got to it. I absolutely think these are awesome. Yep these have a home already too.

This was an awesome swap. I have just started participating in them at Christmas. I like this one because I didn't have to spend a lot of money, but yet it looks like you did. Thanks again Char.

I have nothing to show you that I've done since the things I'm doing are for Char. I will try hard to get hers out this week and then she will show you. LOL.
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Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Really???? Again???? S*N*O*W and Rearranging

Uggghhh.... well we already received about a foot of snow over the weekend. Now as of today we are suppose to get another 6-10in today through tomorrow. I didn't take any pictures, but wished I would have yesterday. The trees all had a beautiful snow ice mixture on them that made them shimmer like diamonds in the sun. Saturday was the worst day of snow as I was suppose to be at work at 6am, but rolled in at 7am. I tried leaving at 5:15 to get there by 6. Steve stayed overnight since the roads were getting terrible already Friday night. He offered to take me to work... OK I gently persuaded him to take me... OK I TOLD him he would be taking me. Steve has a full size pick-up truck and by 5:16 we were stuck in my driveway. The snow came up to the bumper of the truck. My driveway has a big hill that hadn't been touched overnight and it blowed on top of. There was no getting out so at 5:17 I was on the phone eating crow. YES I was on the phone with my ex husband asking him to please come plow me out. Long story short he came plowed and got stuck a few times trying to push all the snow. The highway I travel was snow covered and we took my 4 wheel drive Blazer to work. We couldn't go over 25 mph. Needless to say out of the 8 people I work with on Saturday 2 of them called off. I am waiting to get yelled at for being late. Oh well... Then our ambulance got stuck going to a call... It was a very long day at work. And of course now we are expecting more...

The arrow shows where the edge was shoveled of my sidewalk on Sunday...

I did finish some things up and rearrange a little on Sunday while I was by myself. Not sure if you remember this little bucket I bought at the Goodwill awhile back. If you'll remember it had some rope tied like bands around it too. I took those off sanded it down and of course repainted.


I also found this little one at the Goodwill. I forgot to take a before picture but it was white. Now...

And together with my new greenery that I found at Pat Catan's for $2.00 on sale. LOL

So now of course I have to show you how I rearranged right? I can't stand the wall with my stairway. As you can see it has a HUGE doorbell thingy on it and the thermostat.

If I can hide just one of the eyesores... OK I already had all this in my stash, but now I don't like the plates there...

So take away the plates put up a sampler... better...

I'm sure you all saw before I moved the settle over here and this is the new look. I still need something above the rack like a sign... Now sure what I want it to say as of yet but that's what I'm leaning towards.

So now the TV wall was bare. I had to redo that too. I moved my rocker back down under my bowls. And moved the black step back on the other side. Not thrilled with it but it'll do for a bit... I am still waiting on my TV stand Steve is making to hide the octopus of plugs. LOL

Well I better get going need to go to the store and get some essentials. For some reason my crazy kids seem to think they need milk. LOL. Hopefully if it gets bad school will let out early. Many of the schools were already cancelled before the storm even started.
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Thursday, February 4, 2010

My Box/Measure Collection

I have gotten some wonderful comments on my boxes/grain measures recently. I thought I would share a little about them for those who may have just recently found my blog. I think I've talked about a few of them in prior posts. I have also seen many of you who have found cheese boxes and debated as to paint or not paint. Keep reading and you will find that most of mine are not real per se. They are imitiation look alikes that I spent little to no money on.

First, my big box... I found this shipping container sitting on top of a trash heap. Yes I am a dumpster diver. Of course the trash was in front of the elementary school and of course it was time for the kids to get out. I picked up my son took him home and thought I really want that box. Sooo... back I went and most of the cars were gone when I arrived. LOL. I grabbed it and ran back to my car. It was just a plain bright pine wood container. I grabbed my stain and went to work. As you can see there was a number written on it but I don't care I turn it to the back.

Next is my real measure... This one came from my Grandma's house after she passed away. Dummy me at the time only saw it as a cute little wood box that would be cute to plant real flowers in. YIKES!!!!!! What was I thinking. I was thinking I didn't know what it was and was not into prim at the time. That was my cutesy country decorate with cows era. Anyway, I promptly brought it inside when I figured out what it was.

The next box is a paper mache box that was stained to look like a measure I got at a yard sale a year or so ago. There were some other things piled in the box I wanted, but had to buy everything. As you can see the label is still half on it. But when you turn it upside down and stack another box on it you can't tell.

Next we have a box my sister bought at the Goodwill and then gave to me because she doesn't decorate with things like this. It is something like balsam wood I think. But hey I'm not picky it was free. LOL.

The next cheese box I have was a Christmas gift from my ex MIL. We always said we could always buy each other old dirty dusty stuff and be extremely happy with it as a gift. LOL. Though this one was in awesome shape when she gave it to me. Just a little Briwax softened it right up. You can still see the stamping on it but again I turn it to the back.

Next is the newest cheese box to join my stash. I just found this one a few months back at the Goodwill for $3.00 or so. I still need to paint it. Or maybe I will stain it. And this my friend is why it is not done. LOL. I can't decide. So for those who find these cheese boxes snatch them up.

This little cheese box was a $7.00 find at the antique store. It was the same type of unfinished wood as the one in the previous picture. But with a little paint, stain, and wax this is my new box.

The red box was the second box my sister bought at the Goodwill and gave to me.

Last but not least is the top white box. This box is actually resin. I bought it at a store closing sale. My loving children broke it the other day as they were wrestling around in the living room. This was prior to the box move to the dining room. I got out my super glue and glued it back together. All of these boxes got a beating when they were next to the TV because when you play Wii you have to jump around and swing your arms. LOL.

So in other words you can have beautiful box/measure collections for less money than buying the real ones. It is all in how you display and paint them up. There are some ladies on here who paint the most beautiful paper mache boxes that you can add to your decor too. I actually have a set I'm thinking about repainting myself. But of course I have other projects to be finished first before I start anything new. LOL.
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Tuesday, February 2, 2010

And the Bowls Were Hung with Care...

LOL... ok I know how long has it been since I said I would be hanging my bowls??? Well, I asked Steve if he would kindly hang them and well, I ended up doing it with him supervising from the couch jockey position. What was I thinking the 24 hour Nascar racing something rather was on. LOL. Anyway, for now this is where I picked. This is my TV wall in the living room. Do you like the guitars??? My son got Guitar Hero World Tour for Wii for Christmas and this is where HE stores the guitars. Alright you caught me I am secretly a punk rock star in my spare time. LOL. I haven't even tried the game yet. Ignore the HUGE holes in the walls as I need to fill those in and repaint. I'm just waiting til Spring til I can open the doors and windows when I do paint. Oh yeah I found a different bowl I forgot I had to hang on top. instead of the green one. I like it much better.

Like my blue lunchbox? LOL. I was quickly taking pictures this morning before work. I will be redecorating below the bowls this is just what I happened to have here.

Now of course I have to show you what I worked on all day Saturday. It is not done as I need to add a closure to the top. But I just LOVE this little bag. It is big enough to take magazines or a lunch or whatever on the go. It has denim, blue cotton, and a yellow stripe and lined with muslin. It is much cuter in person.

Of course I did some tweaking so that I could hang my bowls. I moved my boxes from where the bowls are now to here...

Other than that Steve helped me clean my house and get groceries on Sunday. Of course while standing in the line, at the store, I spotted the Country Sampler I didn't receive because I procrastinated in renewing my subscription. Steve asked if I wanted it. Well, that's a silly question!!!! Of course I do. I was trying to read it in the car, but I get car sick when I read so that didn't go well at all. LOL. I ended up waiting til I got home and of course only looked at the pictures first. Then I went back and read it. Anyway, I am so glad they featured a 900 sq ft apartment in it. For those of us who have smaller places can get ideas from others who share the same struggles. Not that I didn't drool over the larger ones... because I did. LOL. I just wish they would show a few more smaller apartments.

I need to get moving and read your blogs as I don't have to be to work until 11am today. I have been having some issues at work with my partner and finally human resources listened and moved me to another truck. I am so grateful and relieved. And so is Steve. LOL. He has had to listen to me complain for weeks now about my partner. This now gives me time to blog and read. Yiipppeee!!!!!

Oh and in case you didn't notice I added some new winter pics to my picture trail. Just click on the picture on the side bar and it will take you there. I am slowly adding more as I get them taken.
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