Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Not thinking

This is an atc I did several years ago which I sent out in a swap. Sorry for the bad scan, but this goes along with my rant for the day. On the way home this morning from work, I saw yet again a driver doing this one thing that makes me so mad! He didn't endanger me, but only because I was a little farther back in the lane I was driving in. Maybe the laws have changed since I took driver's ed many years ago and if they have, someone please fill me in. I'll see if I can explain this where it makes sense. What I'm talking about, is when you are either stopped at a red light or approaching an intersection where the light is changing from red to green(what happened to me today) and the driver(s) in the left turn lane opposite you in the intersection decide it is ok to go ahead and turn across in front of you just because they THINK there will be enough time to do this since you have been stopped or slowed and will have to accelerate. Does that make sense? They don't have a turn arrow obviously or you would not have a green light. I know in intersections with no left turn arrow, you can turn left WHEN NOTHING IS COMING but the ones I'm talking about are those where people are sitting in a turn lane with a red light. There is one in particular that I travel through all the time that is where a 4 lane highway crosses over an interstate and the traffic light is at both ends of the bridge. People are constantly turning in front of me to get onto the interstate, sometimes more than one car at a time, like this. I've even had them look at me, like "what are you doing, lady?" HHHmmm, I think I was proceeding legally through an intersection with a green light! What are you doing, you goofballs?

OK, rant's over. Like I said, if I've missed some traffic law change, I would appreciate being told.

Friday, March 27, 2009


No, I've not gotten my act together yet for my own anniversary giveaway, so I'm going to point you in the direction of some others. Jean at Bluebirds Living in the Meadow is having a lovely giveaway. I learned of it by checking in Jann's blog, A Vintage Heart. Jean is offering some wonderful goodies as shown above-books, beads, and beautiful art pieces.

Also, from perusing Jann's blog, I learned of another giveaway by Kristin of Retro Cafe Art of some gorgeous paper cuts and collage sheets. Go check them out! She had several photos in her giveaway post so I didn't copy one of them here.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

It's a boy!

Emily and Craig found out today that the baby is a boy. I didn't care either way, boy or girl, so I would have been thrilled with whatever they said. I grew up with only brothers, so I always thought I'd have little boys, since that is what I knew about, never really being a girly-girl. When I was expecting my babies, they wouldn't tell you for sure so I didn't know what mine were until they were born. I guess God wanted me to experience raising baby girls and sisters on top of that since he blessed up with our 2 daughters. My daughters definitely are a blessing and I wouldn't trade them for all the money in the world. I think God gives us what we are meant to have. So we will be awaiting Thomas Jeffery Nolen to make an appearance at the beginning of August.

P.S. This is not a family photo, just a vintage picture of a little boy that I thought was cute and might resemble our future grand baby. It's hard to find a vintage photo that you are sure is a little boy, since they all used to wear dresses until a certain age.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Ties That Bind project doll completed

The doll has been completed and pictures are now posted on the Ties That Bind blog. By checking out that post, you will be able to see a link to a photo gallery with several great shots of the doll. This amazing doll with all of the altered ties and charms contributed by numerous artists will be having a photo shoot and then will be raffled off with all proceeds going to ovarian cancer research. I will post all details as I learn of them so that those of you who would like to purchase tickets for the raffle will be able to do so. The doll artist was Jan Brown and then Aileen Roberts and Kris Henderson have also been instrumental in this project from making the bird cage to doing a lot of coordinating and behind the scenes work, as well as maintaining the blog AND a yahoo group. Didn't Jan do such awesome job on the doll! Then all the ties, charms, birdcage, just all of it so wonderful! On the left side of the blog is a list of contributing artists and the blog itself has pictures of all the charms and ties as they were received faithfully posted as the project progressed.

I'm showing the scans of my 2 charms and then I borrowed from the Ties That Bind blog(hope that was ok) pictures of the doll and one of the pics that shows both of my charms in one shot. If I find out I shouldn't have done this, I'll remove the photos from here and just direct you to those at the project blog. Be sure to check it out anyway, as it is the best way to see all the charms and ties up close and to see which artists did what. There were many wonderful stories sent in with the artwork that I hope get published somewhere. Lots of meaning behind each piece of art. I deem it an honor to have been able to contribute. This is a link to my original post here on my blog where I explained some of my thought process behind the charms I created. Here is some of my explanation that I posted to the yahoo group about the family members who died from cancer that I wanted to remember with my contributions:

I don't have any family members who have had ovarian cancer, except perhaps my great grandmother and they are not sure if that is what she had or not. Back then they didn't know things like that. I have had several family members die from cancer though. So these charms are in memory of them. The list includes:

Both of my grandmothers, one from complications from breast cancer and the other from metasticized colon cancer

My mother's oldest sister, from lung/liver cancer

That same aunt's only child, her daughter, from metastatic breast cancer, and my aunt's husband from a brain tumor. One of my cousin's 2 sons ended up committing suicide as a teenager, so I count him as a victim as well.

My Mom's only brother from metastatic skin cancer

Please help spread the word, especially as the raffle time nears, so that this will be as successful as it can be to help in the fight against this silent and deadly killer.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Starry nights?

Not lately with all the rain. I've not heard the total rainfall here, but it has rained on and off for a couple of days. I'm sure we will be glad of it when summer droughts hit. This is a scan of an altered book spread done previously, but not shared here before. Life seems to be pretty busy lately, so nothing new to show. This spread was kind of an add-on between a spread about faces and a page that I have shown before where I watercolored a painting of a tree and moon with found poetry in the words on the book page. The left hand page is star-patterned paper with daisies cut from a greeting card to illustrate the poem on the right hand page that I think I found in a vintage children's textbook and printed out on blue cardstock. For the window, I used some clear plastic taped into a cutout with silver tape.

I wanted to be sure to get a post done in case life gets even more hectic in the next few days. It does look like I am going to be able to get away with Kerry and Holly to go to the races in Bristol, Tenn. Mom seems to be doing well and we will only be gone from Thursday evening until Sunday evening.

Mom was able to get physical therapy at her home because of the stroke. This was an answered prayer and Mom says the therapist is wonderful. During the first therapy session yesterday, she was able to show Mom some exercises to help her right arm which is the least recovered from her stroke and had some suggestions to help her strengthen her right ankle. So already she has been able to help with some issues that 3 physical therapy places never dealt with last year, in addition to the exercises she is having Mom do for her left knee to recover from the arthroscopy. I was so glad to hear that.

While in Bristol, I will not have any internet access. I could take my laptop and probably find wireless internet in a fast food place or something, but I won't be able to charge the battery on it because we will be totally running electric by generator. I've been told you shouldn't use computers with that kind of electrical current.

One of the reasons I decided to go even though I won't be going to the races(we only had 2 tickets) was to just spend time with Holly some before she moves off this summer. Don't think I mentioned here before that she and her hubby had been contemplating moving to Waco, Texas after graduation in May. He wants to attend school there to get his Masters. They have decided to make the move. I am behind them, of course, in their decision, but as a Mom was secretly wishing it could work out for them to realize their dreams a little closer to home. We just got Emily and Craig back here last year and now these 2 are moving off. With Em's new baby on the way this summer, too, I see lots of emotional moments in my future.

Sunday, March 15, 2009


I haven't forgotten about mentioning having a 1 year anniversary giveaway. I've just not had time to get anything made, so I'm still thinking about what I'm going to do. Maybe it will have to be an ephemera pack or thrift store find. I guess it will just be a late giveway, that I'll have to call a Spring contest or something like that.

On the other hand, Jann at A Vintage Heart, who was one of my OWOH event winners is having a lovely anniversary giveaway. For posting here about it, I will get 2 chances to win the lovely Easter rabbit trinket box she has made. Go check it out here.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Time flying by

I haven't made you all look at a cute pet picture in a while, so here is one of Max where he is most probably saying, "Mama, will you come play?" This is how good he is at begging. He will also use this face for when he needs to go outside and you have not noticed. Thinking about that reminds me of a funny story about Max and his asking for something. I had come into the kitchen to begin to fix a meal. Emily was living at home at the time and she was already in the kitchen. Max walked over and stood up with his front feet on the counter at the sink. It's not like him to do that and I told him to get down. Emily said, "I don't know why, but he keeps doing that!" He did it again and it finally dawned on my preoccupied mind that maybe he was trying to tell me something. I really looked at him this time and he was looking at the faucet and then looking at me. So then I looked over at his water bowl which was bone dry. All this time he had been basically pointing at the water faucet with his nose and then looking at us, "like, you morons, if I had fingers I could do this myself" or "what do I have to do, draw you a picture?". So sometimes our pets are smarter than we are, lol!

Why is it that off days seem to fly by? I'm back at work again. It seemed like my off week was here and then gone. Of course, part of is was taken up by helping Mom. I didn't get much creative done, except to start sorting that massive bunch of jewelry, mostly pins, that my friend gave me last year. I did get some clothes together and boxed up to give to the thrift store. I really need do that with lots of things, like books and junk, too. Well, more clothes need to go also. My hubby wanted to wash off the camper while the weather was pretty so we got that done Tuesday and I did take a few moments that day to sit on my deck and enjoy the gorgeous sunshine.

Took Mom to have her stitches out of her knee yesterday. They are going to be able to have Home Health come do her physical therapy at her home which is so wonderful. I wasn't sure how I was going to manage when I had to work. I don't really like the idea of driving someone else around after I've worked all night. She is doing pretty well. Has a lot of bruising which bothers her more than the incision areas. The nurse practioner explained that during an arthroscopy your thigh area is held in a vise while the doctor bends your knee in very awkward positions.

I hope to be able to go with my dh to the races at Bristol next weekend while I'm off. Holly is attending the actual races with her Dad, as I wasn't sure if I could get away depending on Mom's health, so he asked her if she'd like to go. It looks like I might be ok to be gone for the weekend, so I'm going along to just spend some time with them. I don't really care whether I see the race or not. There are other activities such as sponsors with free samples and giveaways. We take our RV and are dry camping so to speak. Have to borrow a generator and take water or buy some. A couple of our friends who are big time race fans are going to be staying with us as well. I'll take some books or craft stuff to while away the time while they are at the races. Or maybe I'll just take a nap or two. We'll see how it goes.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Spring flowers and good news(warning long post!)

Mom had her surgery Thursday and everything went pretty well. Some great things happened, like she was moved to be the first case by her surgeon, so while we had to be there at 5:30am we weren't there all day. The outpatient surgery had numerous cases that day. If they hadn't moved her time up, I feel it would have been an extremely long day and Mom doesn't do well when she hasn't had anything to eat as she is a diabetic. This is actually why her case was first. She opted for spinal anesthesia which has fewer risks overall than general, but the disadvantage was it took a little while for the feeling to come back in her bottom half, limiting her ability to move that is already impaired from the stroke. They kind of rushed her out of there because they were so busy. If my brother and his wife had not been there to help, I don't know how Mom and I would have managed to get her in the car or out of the car and into her house.

I stayed with her until about lunchtime on Friday, when she sent me home. As the feeling came back, it became easier for her to move and it seems that the surgery is making difference already in her knee pain. Of course it is sore from the surgery, but she said even yesterday that the sharp pain from before was gone.

I finally got the spring flower book done for Priscilla and dropped it in the mail on Wednesday evening. I stayed up late to get it done and packaged up, so was up at midnight Wednesday night scanning the pages before I had to get up a 4am to go get Mom to the hospital. So anyway, please excuse that the scans are a little crooked!

This is the front cover, with the pic above showing one side of the attached tags and the one below the flipside of them. The background is collaged strips of paper that were gessoed over with some paint glazes also. The flower was one from a package of chipboard elements that were too glossy for the look I wanted so I glued watercolored book page paper over the front and then sanded to distress the edges using sticker letters for SPRING. I like to save unique clothing tags to reuse and the big oval tag is one of those. I gessoed it to cover the advertising, then stamped, used some paint glazes, and added images. The book is tied together with strips of torn vintage pillowcase fabric.

Note: you can click on each picture to make it bigger so you can see it better.

Above is the first spread of pages. All pages started out as gessoed cardboard saved from the packages of printer paper at work. For this background I used some green, yellow, blue glazes and then stamped leaves with a multicolored stamp ink. The central images and words are from a vintage children's schoolbook. Small snippets of paper gleaned from my messy craft table surface surround these images. See, there is an advantage to not being a neat freak! Uh-hmm! The left hand page has some vintage green trim for an accent, both pages some ric-rac and then on the right another of those chipboard flowers that I distressed. Also used some clear flower stickers. Handcolored the black and white illustrations with watercolors pencils.

For the next set of pages above, I started out with horizontal strips of torn paper as for the cover, also gessoed with some light gesso stamping. On the right page is a transparency glued over some scrapbook papers and on the left a poem from the same children's book. The middle strips of paper were floral wallpaper so I used some of the flowers in that and added more paper flowers and punched green hearts for leaves. Drew the greenery with markers. The floral swag between the punched birds is one of those glittery temporary tatoos.

This spread started out as more of the floral wallpaper as a background. The girl under the umbrella was from a piece of scrapbook paper. The flowers and grass at her feet inspired me to blend her into the background with more handpainted grass, flowers, and color splashes of acrylic paint. The roses in the teacup and the one in her hand are more of the clear stickers. The words are again from the kids textbook.

Here the background is scraps of book text and other paper scraps glued down, gessoed, and then acrylic glazes washed over them. The bird and nest are clear stickers, the flowers are rub-ons, and the tree was drawn by hand and color with markers. More text from the vintage children's book for the poem. The awning across the top is more watercolored book paper.

The last spread above is collaged bits of 2 different watercolor painted book pages. I did up a good many of these by tearing out pages from vintage books and then playing with my watercolor paints in different combinations and deigns. For one of these I had done several colors in polka dots and the other was a rainbow that went across the page. Of course, I gessoed to blend, one of my favorite things to do. The lady was an image from a collage sheet from Aileen at Outside the Margins. Her antennae are cut from some glittery paper. The roses, butterfly, and her butterfly wings are more of those clear stickers. The flower circles were punched out from scrapbook paper and surrounded with Stickles glitter. Again the wording from the children's book. To finish off the background, I used markers to added different circles of color.

The back page of the book was done pretty much like the front, just a different, smaller chipboard flower.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

May be away from the computer a few days

Will be going early in the morning to pick up Mom and then will be staying with her at least tomorrow evening. We'll see how she does. She doesn't have internet, so I won't be able to check the blog or email until I am back home.

Monday, March 2, 2009


It's been a busy week at work and I've been sick with a bad cold as well. Isn't that the way it usually goes? Didn't start getting sick until my first night back at work, this past Wednesday. I usually try to start taking extra vitamins, Airborne, and/or Zicam when I first start getting symptoms and often can fight off being very sick, but this time it was like I was fine and then I wasn't. I did start my regimen after I got sick and I think it did shorten the duration of the cold as I was already feeling better yesterday and even more so today.

I had hoped to get some pretty pictures of the snow we had here in Alabama, but it was not a good morning at work, so I was late leaving. By the time I got home this morning at 11 am, the snow was already melting, so I didn't bother trying to take any pictures. Wish I'd gotten to see it more than just from the windows at work. It still looked pretty in the wooded areas driving home.

Today's photo is one of an altered lunchbag that I posted about last year. I brought it to work with me tonight, which reminded me that I had said I would see how durable the technique was over time. I used gel medium to glue down the paper and also as a topcoat. It seems to be flexible enough that the collage is not cracking and makes it also where you can wipe it off with a damp cloth to clean. If you didn't see that previous post, this bag had a corporate logo on it and that company no longer owns the hospital. So I thought I'd give it a facelift. The collage is different paper pieces with words from a label maker, a foam heart sticker embellishment, and buttons. I think this would work on canvas tote bags printed with advertising.

Oh, yes, my Mom is to have arthroscopic surgery on her knee this Thursday. This is her "good" leg, so she really needs everything to go well and this surgery to work to help her be better. They found a medial meniscal tear which is inside the knee bones so the surgery will be to shave off and remove any loose "stuff". She will have some physical therapy starting the week afterwards. Her right side is still not fully functional from her stroke, so I would appreciate any prayers that her surgery will go well, that it will help her problem, and that the physical therapy will all work out so I can take her around my work schedule.

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