Saturday, June 29, 2013

Finally .... a few more pictures from last weekend!

Last Sunday evening we had an Engagement Party 
for Anna & Wylon.
Frans & Jenny were very kind to let us use their home ...
they are out of town for a while.
We fit over there much better than over here!
It was a very nice evening
and we appreciated everyone who joined us.

Special thanks to Chelsea for taking pictures ...
and we are so glad that Kevin felt well enough to be there.
Also glad that Dan & Fran (Anna's godparents) were able to
join us as they will be in Finland at the time of the wedding.

Bring on the fun!!
I'm a person who loves to be given a project and then "Get it Done!" is my motto.
Not halfway ... just go for it.

Mother's Camp is the weekend before the wedding and I hope to be there without a care in the world. 

So on the Got it Under Control List:

Wedding dress in hand and undergoing alteration
Samples of dress colors in the mail today to girls out of state
Tux colors done
Invitation papers 99% cut
(Insert a HUGE plug here for ... I've never had such speedy service from anyone!)
Addressing envelopes underway
Dinner napkins and table skirts went into a bin in the house today
First thing that got done was the church and the minister reserved
Reception planning underway
Menu nearly there
Organist secured
Wedding decorations accumulating
Person in charge of kitchen secured

I know that September 14th is still a way off but the bride and groom are on the ball!
I'll share some of my crazy organizing stuff ideas later ... I hope it works!

I have to tell you that the lady at the register at Party City today asked us, "Is your wedding next week?"
I nearly had a heart attack. That must be the norm. Uhm. Not for me it can't be.
She said she actually had a lady come in and fill a cart with wedding supplies ... for her own wedding that evening.
No. Can. Do.

Friday, June 28, 2013

26:52 Father

 Project 52

"It's hard to believe isn't it, Duke?
Even Dad was a little guy once."

Continue around the circle to Amber's blog.
May your weekend be a tad bit cooler than ours!

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

baby shower

I had good intentions of posting some photos from this weekend earlier this week. 
We had a very busy weekend after my relaxing crafty days lounging at home.
Now class is back in session and it is taking a bit of self control to get myself to actually sit down and work on that.

Saturday afternoon we held a baby shower at our house hosted by Alyx & Angie.
I've been to many baby showers in my life ... this was a first in the co-ed shower department.
It really wouldn't work with our usual crowd, but this was a small group.
13 of us ... with more men than women. Talk about fun!

It was a serious sea of pink ....

The decorating committee hard at work.

We played games. Some of them familiar to the gals in the group ... totally foreign to the guys. The top left photo is one of self diapering. Each player was given a roll of toilet paper to try and make themselves a diaper. The bottom right: Ben trying to guess what kind baby food was in the jar. (I told them all that tasting was in no uncertain terms considered cheating.)

Our diapered contestants. I'm very thankful for disposable diapers with velcro tabs on them. Otherwise .... if this is what they do with a roll of toilet paper .... imagine what they would do with a diaper pin!

After all the frivolity of games had ended and the food (I still have a stomach ache from all the cream cheese I ate that day!) was nibbled down ...

we gathered 'round for another set of good laughs. Jari got us hooked up on Skype from Phoenix to Fairbanks so Natasha could have her mom with us for part of her day. I have to say that I nearly needed one of those diapers I laughed so hard!

That was our Saturday! Sorry, if you are friends with me on Facebook and have already seen some of these. I usually don't post much in the way of photos on FB anymore but did so this time for Natasha's family that couldn't be with us. 

I probably won't be back with photos from the rest of last weekend's celebration until sometime this weekend. Being as the temperature is suppose to hit something like 118, I'm going to be hanging out indoors ... all weekend. 

Saturday, June 22, 2013

photos on canvas

We've all seen the advertisements for expensive canvas photos.
Although I love them, I've just not been able to justify the expense of having them done.
There are also many different types of do it yourself projects out there
that produce pretty much the same effect.
The goal is to get a canvas on the wall of your loved ones.
I've got a little tutorial here for you to try!

I've posted these pictures on the blog before.
Dad with his girls and mom with her boys.
A small disappointment was that the photos taken of myself and the boys
were taken at 800 ISO which made enlarging them to 11x14 a little less
clear than I would have liked. 
So .... if you're going to try this and can adjust the ISO on your camera,
drop it down to 200.

I had already mounted the large ones before I started snapping pictures,
so these are the 8x10 photos ready for canvas.
I had them printed at Costco and used the option of an added black frame.

I would have used regular canvas, but these happened to be on sale at Michael's when I went,
so thought I would try these instead.

They are a thin board instead of a thicker canvas on a frame.

Some black craft paint and a sponge brush ... 
make sure you get the edges as well.

Because I managed to get paint on the back of the canvas,
I propped them on bowls to dry.
Another coat of black went on when the first was dry.

When the paint was dry, I slopped on Mod Podge.
Don't goop it on too much tho'.

Lay the photo on top of the wet Mod Podge and smooth out any air bubbles,
working your way from the center to the outside. 
Do that before you Mod Podge over the photo!
Once your photo is on smoothly, Mod Podge over the top of it.
Several coats of Mod Podge are advisable.
I was in a hurry and only did one coat. 
If the light hits the wall just the right way, the spots that had less on them show up.

This is a side view of the regular canvas.
I did the same paint and Mod Podging on the larger canvases as well.
I have to say that I liked the application onto the larger one better than the board.

Another negative with the board is that it bent.
I thought about putting a heavy book on it for a while to see if it would 
straighten out, but didn't. It may have been bent from the packaging .. don't know.

Once everything was dry it went up on the wall.
That meant moving the other large piece that sat on this wall.
Which meant hunting for the stud finder.
Filling leftover holes with white toothpaste ....

And then I decided that it would be nice to have the entire family in one picture!

So I uploaded one more photo to Costco.
Much better!
A little hint here about printing photos.
I just sent the photo without checking to see how it would crop when printed.
I lost half of Tia on the right side and half of Brock on the left.
Was wishing I had lost an extra chin or hanging arm on myself instead!
I had a 17x20 frame that I had taken off the wall so ordered that size print
to fill the frame. 

I like it!
I really don't know how pictures are suppose to be placed on walls.
Plunk 'em where you like 'em is my philosophy!

I have also printed photos on tissue paper and then mod podged them onto canvas.
It worked out okay, but my printer liked to leave a white line going across the photo.
Attaching the printed photo the canvas was much easier!
And .... should I ever decide to change them ... I'll just mod podge new photos right over the old ones.
Another penny saving hint: use canvases you already have and are tired of or pick them up at yard sales for a quarter. As long as the paint on the canvas is smooth, it is easily reusable.

Have fun!

Friday, June 21, 2013

25:52 silhouette

Project 52

Being as my human subjects are out of town and
my canine subject can't manage more than moving from
food dish to sleep, I'm left with photographing the 
extremes of our existence.



Can't wait to see what Amber did this week.
Especially today as the sun rises in her neighborhood at 4:14 this morning 
and doesn't set until 23:45 at night!

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

i almost feel guilty

... but I don't. 
Most of us go through the daily dregs, whatever they are,
to get to days like this.
The coffee pot that I serve a pile of guests out of broke.
I'm out of cups for the Keurig pot
and I really don't prefer the put your own grounds in the holder 
type of coffee. Oh, don't get me wrong.
I'll drink just about anything that is black coffee ...
but I still have a few more options.
Today ... I'm french pressing mine.

The kids left for camp at 9:00 this morning.
When I say kids that would mean the only two that live at home anymore.
I miss them when they're gone ... I really do.
A few days to do whatever the dickens I feel like
might be worth an attempt at a cartwheel.
Just sayin'.

We have a couple of fun events over the weekend to prepare for ...
and a few projects around here that I've been wanting to accomplish as well.
If I could find the stud finder it might help.
In the meantime tho',
I've really got to get some discussion posts done for school.

Then ..... the days are mine.

Maybe I'll even remember to degrease the top of the stove, eh?

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

today ....

I abandoned the dishes.
I abandoned the laundry.
I escaped the heat.
I ran away from school work 
and straight up the hill.
I shared a long overdue visit with Keilah in Flagstaff
while the littles searched for roly polies
to fill their ice cream bucket farm ....

and found them.

A serious dose of rejuvenation!
It's probably going to have me dreaming on Zillow again tomorrow.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Happy Father's Day

A special Happy Father's Day to the wonderful man who raised me ... and continues to be a positive support in my life. I was able to hear his voice across the miles today, although I much prefer to have him sitting at my table sharing coffee with me.

We Skyped today with our other father as well. Talking on the phone is difficult with Pekka, but Skype works really well. Another man who I wish was drinking sugar with his coffee coffee with his sugar at my table.

Pappa sang Anna a song today .... why, oh why, didn't I record it?!

Last evening we had the other part of the kids over here. We're split shifting Father's Day this year. I had several turkeys sitting in the freezer that needed cooking and have had a difficult time finding a day to have a crowd here to eat. Last night .... we ate. I skipped the sweet potatoes. Today, the leftovers all left with Blayde who couldn't be here last night! Not a bad way to share our meals and have everyone part of the day.

Last of all ... a Happy Father's Day to the man with whom I share my life.
The man who still holds my hand in church and shares my pathway.

The man who gives his children one of the greatest gifts he can in loving their mother.

The man who has a steak on the grill for me as I type ....

Happy Father's Day to the father of my beautiful children ... we are truly blessed.

Friday, June 14, 2013

24:52 stranger

"There is she ... again! 
She thinks I'm something to take pictures of
but she should really look in the mirror.
She has that funny black thing sticking out of 
the front of her face
Talk about straaaange.
Then she wants to act like she's my friend
or something.
Get it lady ....
you're a stranger ....
and you make me nervous."

Project 52

Linking up this week month to Amber ... enjoy!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

congratulations anna & wylon

I might need a moment or two to share what is really in my heart ...
and maybe it is just too full to even sort it all out.

On Monday evening this week our daughter Anna
became engaged to be married.
As parents we are filled with thankfulness.
She has been led to a man who will treasure her always ...
just as she will treasure him.
She has been led to man who shares her same faith.
She has been led to a family that is warm and welcoming.
She has been led to bring to us another member for our own family.
We are truly thankful.

Engagement photos are being taken in several weeks and although I would
love to prop the couple here, there and everywhere while I snap myself silly,
I'll wait patiently ... and settle for one that was taken in November instead.

The planning has commenced .... the creativity (I'm trying to cap it!) is flowing ....
and we are going to thoroughly enjoy this exciting time with them!

Monday, June 10, 2013

organizing spaces

Do you ever get spring fever when it really isn't the appropriate season for such a thing?
I'm not talking about the urge to be outside smelling dandelions,
rather the urge to tackle your kitchen cupboards, closets and every surface that is cluttered.

I remember my mom appreciating when I was sick with a bug of some kind.
As soon as I was feeling better .... I had at the kitchen cupboards ... organization central hit hard.

Maybe it is the fact that my present class ended Sunday and I was done with nearly everything Friday morning.
Maybe it is the fact that I don't have school work this week ... I actually have a week off between classes.
Maybe it is the fact that next week I am on vacation from work.
Maybe it is all of it put together.

Friday ... I started weeding through stuff and organizing.
Somewhere once upon a time I saw an idea for organizing kitchen cupboards using little bin things
purchased at the dollar store.
She used black baskets for hers ... unfortunately I didn't have the option.
Tia & I ran to the dollar store on Friday and picked up these ....

It didn't take too many minutes to realize that this was not going to be enough for what I wanted. It is also difficult to judge what fits best in each space and best holds the items you want to store in them until you start to play with them.

Jari & Tia were gone Friday evening and I opted to stay home. As soon as they left, I was back at the dollar store buying more of these little treasures.
A good Sidney Sheldon book playing in my ears and a rag in my hands ... that is either a definite sign of age or a working mom when I choose to clean cupboards on a Friday nite. 

The baskets are a little on the cheap outside. Like, duh, they cost 99cents. They were cheap!
Canning Jar Lids? Right up there with Cake Decorating supplies. We really use the pressure cooker around here and those lids (the screw on part) end up everywhere! They sort of drive me crazy. I'm hoping to contain them a little with this basket. I'm not a cake decorator, but we do enjoy cookie decorating and those things were rolling lose all over the place as well.

Now this piece might prove challenging. I have no clue if it will work or not, but I left out the few things that I use all the time. The rest I placed in baskets. Seasonings in one ....

and baking things in another. Like, seriously. How often do you use your molasses?!

To be fair, I should have taken a before picture but I didn't. 
I didn't even think about it let alone consciously push the thought away.

I was having so much fun that I moved to my bedroom next. For a few years we managed to have a bedroom that wasn't a combination of sleeping quarters and office. For a few years. That time will come again, but it isn't here yet. My hubby makes serious piles of papers and all kinds of officey stuff. Clothing ... he puts where it belongs. I hit part of it and ignored part. The part I ignored is akin to cleaning out his tools in the garage. Ain't going to touch those with a ten foot pole. Not posting pictures of the part I did take care of, but suffice it to say that more of these bins made it onto a shelf in there and organization like activity happened. Enough so that the girls walked in and were impressed ... without my pointing it out to them!! 

My labels on the bins are a little hokey. My idea was to attach them with velcro stickies so I could change them as needed. I didn't want to put them on permanently. Problemo Uno: the velcro stickies I bought at the dollar store don't stick very well to the container. I might redo them and hang with a ribbon or just take a glue gun to them. It probably won't take long to get to that point either if they keep falling off just sitting there!

That would be my organization ideas for this week. In the next few weeks ... hopefully more cupboards and closets will be left with only what I use and need. The rest ... outta here!!

Friday, June 7, 2013

23:52 details

At all times in life, until the last 24 weeks, I considered the word Rubric to be 
the equivalent of some nasty word that we don't use.
I have helped kids do school at home and all those writing assignments 
had those nasty rubrics attached to them.
Just so you know ....
I might just be uncomfortable with that which I don't know or understand.
Rubric was right up there at the top of the list if I had to pay any attention to it.

Today, I have to say that the rubric is my friend.
I write papers and complete projects to the tune of the rubric.
Each section of the project is a section of an orchestra.
The rubric might be the conductor who keeps everyone on track 
and heading in the right direction.
Or is the rubric the piece of music?
Either way, the rubric is what keeps us heading in the right direction.
It keeps the details straight and orderly.
The rubric ensures that my project will be acceptable to the professor ...
and as I like to ramble or head off on a tangent .... 
it keeps the details right where they need to be.
Incidentally, my professor likes to include these ....... in her detailed instructions!

Project 52
23:52 details

Yes, it is in the details.

Next up this week .... details of a charmed Alaska life. Have fun!

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

crocheting a rug

out of scrap materials. 
A while back, in fact before I headed to the Flagstaff Cabin Crafting Weekend, I was looking for some ideas of a project that travels easily. Pack it in a bag and take it along without dragging along a sewing machine.
I hit the world of Pinterest and found absolutely darling crocheted rugs that I thought would be super fun to try my hand at. 
All I needed was a bunch of leftover fabrics. check.
A crochet hook. After Hobby Lobby it was check.
Lazy days and moments to sit and spin mindless miles of cut fabric into a rug. check.

I cut strips of leftovers into 1 inch strips and started crocheting. Although I had seen some darling rugs that weren't in a circle pattern, this is what I ended up doing. I do have a handy tutorial to link to that shows you how I attached the strips to each other without using a sewing machine. Makes car traveling a cinch with this project. I just need to do some car traveling! 

This rug is actually going to make it into Alyx's bathroom at some point. It isn't completed yet ... I ran out of blue fabrics and the lightweight denim I was using was a bit heavy to work with. I do have a wee bit of it left so I may have to just go with it and finish this! There are scraps of fabrics cut from pajama bottoms, fabrics that someone (not me believe it or not!) was going to quilt once upon a time and never finished, scraps of anything that had blue in it.

I came to a standstill on this one. Even though my dear Alyx is a tall and thin woman ... I figured I should add a few more circles around this thing so she can at least spread her arms when she gets out of the shower!

So, while I'm waiting to accumulate blue shirt style cotton fabrics, I moved on to the tee shirts. I started cutting up anything that was bright in color (and some dark to mix in with it) and was headed for the Goodwill bag. Once again, they were cut into 1 inch strips and if you look at the tutorial .... I cut the slits in these while they are still on the cutting mat so they are all ready to hitch together when I've got a moment to sit and crochet.

This hook is a size M or 9.00mm hook. I've used the same hook for both rugs. Although I was really looking to make a rug that was more square ....

it isn't ending up square or even a squared off rectangle. Rather a longer oval shaped rug. While at the cabin, I was crocheting in a way that made the rug look different from different sides. Makes sense? Jeannette showed me how to do it differently, so this one should be completely reversible. It is all double crocheted which makes me go through strips of fabric much faster, gives me wider rows and allows me to get a rug done quicker ... if I have time to sit and play with it.

I don't know where these things are going to end up, but I figure rugs are like quilts. One can never have enough of them ... and they feel downright homey. Log cabin with the wood fire burning homey. And why not recycle those shirts that are sitting in your drawer not being worn? They'll be nice and thick under the toes ... nearly luxurious!