Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Swapping White & Ivory...

This is only my third time to participate in Linda's A Swap For All Seasons and I am loving it.  She does a unique swap where you send to one person and another person sends to you.  This keeps it very interesting and you always connect with new people.  The theme this month...Wedding and White or Ivory.  Thank you Linda for another wonderful swap.

Here is my package I sent along to May in the UK.  Here is May's blog link.  I still feel like I am learning how this is done.  Thankfully I mailed very early in April and have just learned that May received her package yesterday and likes it.  We make one card which might be used by the recipient.  We also make one tag in the theme.  I happened to make two as I did a bride and a groom each.  Lots of de-stash in the proper colors.  I learned May really likes lace so I included a few pieces of that.

This is the swap package I received from Jayne.  Here is Jayne's blog link.  Here card is over-the-moon gorgeous and the tag as well.  Even the card envelope is stunning in pure white embossed elegance.  Thank you so very much Jayne.

Here are the beautiful and generous contents Jayne shared with me.  I feel so spoiled and blessed.  There is so much wonderful Creative Bliss here and I will be able to utilize it in my projects. Thank you is just too inadequate.  I will be linking to Linda's Linky party so be certain to go and have a look to inspire you.
Extra warm weather here for a few days.  Lots of wind and fire danger so praying for all to be safe.  By the weekend it is said to be 20 degrees colder.  Wow!  I am glad I am not the type to pack away my clothes for each season as I need such a variety all year long.  Prayers and Healing Energy for all suffering horrific tornadoes across our country.  It just seems to keep getting worse and worse for so many.
Goodbye April.  You have been a busy and exciting month.  Now let's see what the month of May holds in store for us.  Creative Bliss and do something you enjoy each and every day...

Monday, April 28, 2014

Bubble Wand Playtime...

Sometimes playing in the studio just has to come first!  I cannot tell you how much delight I had in making these bubble wands.  My inspiration was from the Frugal Crafter and here is her tutorial link.  She says she is having a Lawrence Welk moment.  I do remember how many bubbles that set always had.  I personally love blowing bubbles into the breeze and seeing how far they may go.  I have not added any ribbons as I want to do that when I am ready to gift these.

Here are my supplies.  I do not know what wire I used as it was very old and of course had no packaging. Mr. C's rule..."Volume In must equal Volume Out!"  I consider the packaging to be lots of Volume!!!  lol As you can see I even used some green floral wire.  I wouldn't be certain my wire will not rust.  These are my beginner's batch.  For my next wands I will use some finer wire, including my favorite copper wire...if it hasn't all been stolen by copper thieves!  I wrapped the blowing end around a pill bottle and the hanging end around either the green tool or the pen.  I didn't like either very well but they did work.  The beads are all gone so I couldn't show you them before hand.  I honestly used the cheap lightweight plastic beads from my local $1.29 store.  They are very light and do not bend or distort the handle. I am trying to use what I have and sometimes that is quite a challenge.  Not buying everything "perfect" for every project really allows me more creative thought and process and I enjoy that little bit of challenge.

What do you think?  Fun and whimsy?  Party favors?  Magic Fairy Bubble Wands?  I am such a little girl at heart and still enjoy the simple joys of life.  While I was making these I had lots of loving and fond thoughts of my cousin who passed away all too soon in life.  She also loved blowing bubbles and we agreed it is quite the stress reliever.  Thank you Eleene for playing along with me.  Hmmm...I wonder what other beads I have in my bead boxes?  Not today.  I am cleaning up part of my studio.  While filling up the recycle bin with cardboard.  Why did I think I needed to save so much cardboard?  I am certain I can get more when I need it.  Wow!  I can see the wall and the floor now.  It actually feels pretty good to eliminate some of the clutter! There, I have said it and now I can release the desire to go retrieve some of my cardboard back.  My very favorite dog I met years ago was named Zelda the Wonder Dog and she was a Border Collie.  I do believe I am a Border Hoarder and my SuperPower name is Sherelda.  That just might explain why I cannot throw things away.  Just as soon as I donate or give something away sure as anything I need it and miss it!  Does that happen to you or am I all alone?
Our weather is pure Spring.  Weeds growing wildly with abandon as we had such glorious rain a few days ago.  Birds of all feathers are flitting about and singing their lovely tunes.  I could stand at the window and watch them for hours. least until Mr. C calls me.  
As April quickly comes to a close for this year we shall head into May.  What might May hold in store for you?  I hope lots of play time and doing just exactly what you love to do.  Creative Joyful Bliss...

Friday, April 25, 2014

Tea Garden ATCs...

Once again I could not resist joining Kimberly's ArtJoyStuff ATC swap.  Theme this time is Tea in the Garden and this one Kimberly herself made.  Exquisite!  When I saw this I did not think I could do justice to the theme.  However after a little thought and a quick trip to my local Benny's I knew I could participate and stay in style just fine.  Thank you Kimberly once again.

Here are my ATCs.  Each one slightly different yet all very similar.  I used real tea bags to give authenticity. Combinations of purchased die cuts, vellum, lace, theme buttons and floral papers set the tone.

Here is my packaging.  Vintage floral fabric sewn into bags with another tea bag and embellished button to close the ATC inside.  I am happy with my results and can only hope the recipients are pleased as well.
Last evening I went to sleep with the peaceful sound of drizzling rain.  By early morning it was full pouring rain and so very welcome here.  It has been snowing over Donner Summit so that is even better.  Our water table will get a tiny bit of relief.  My rain gauge shows just over one inch.  I would like to have this continue for days however no more predicted and with temperatures in the high 80's by Monday we will be warm and dry once again.
With April coming to a quick close I hope you are all enjoying Spring and no more Winter where you are. Our friends across the globe heading into Autumn will be enjoying their foliage as it changes beautiful hues. Creative Bliss to all and lets make something beautiful...

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Earth Day Sprinkles...

Hello Earth Day and Thank You Mother Nature.  Today is not sunny like this photo of Spring growth. Today is actually sprinkling...very tiny soft little droplets of rain.  Glorious rain to water my thriving plants with all their new leaves and buds and tiny little flowers.

The other day I bought a new tool.  Usually I buy something for my crafty side but this was something I needed.  However it is no fun!  I spent one hour trying to trim tiny spent blossoms from my Crepe Myrtle and my shoulders are sore for days.  This is not going to get much use around this household. even looks like a torture device.  Thank goodness I only spent $16 on it.  Even Mr. C is not a fan of this tool.  He did some trimming for me and came to the same conclusion...torture tool.

This is one of my Crepe Myrtles and it is over twenty feet tall.  I can no longer reach to prune it.  That is why I thought the long pole would help.  I have even thought of backing up my truck to stand on the tailgate but with my recent score of falls and mishaps realized I better not even attempt such a maneuver!  Mr. C agreed!

Here is a lovely Pink Black and Bling ATC my friend Jane in Florida sent to me.  She does have a blog however it is inactive for now as life is keeping her busy beyond hectic.  Thank you Jane Dear.  I love this!

And with the pink theme I did a couple of my little ballchain button necklaces.  I shared previously the green one.  I had fun putting this together and sending out as part of my NLWM mailings.  Haven't heard how they were received though.  I know the recipients love pink!

My photo skills are horrible but you get the overall idea of how they can look.  I admit I haven't spent much time in my studio or being creative other than my commitment to sending out lots of mail.  I truly bit off more than I could chew this year.  I am enjoying sending and receiving fun mail.  There are some very clever and creative people participating.  I even received two separate excellent "letters" which structure like I learned way back when.  Very refreshing and I will be responding to those in the next couple of days.  Thank you to everyone participating.
Off to enjoy a cup of tea with Mr. C.  He manages to stay very busy.  I feel blessed when we are able to sit and enjoy one another's company and conversation.  We are watching Cosmos the new series and it is fascinating.  Mr. C completely understands and speaks Science and Physics and all that I am so not able to even comprehend.  I enjoy it however it just does not compute in my brain.  How does one even calculate 4 1/2 billion years?  Billions and Billions and Billions...
Please take time to enjoy Spring and all the new and beautiful buds, leaves, blossoms and birdies singing. We are truly fortunate to live in such an amazing world.   Creative Blossoming Bliss...

Saturday, April 19, 2014

April Has Wings...

I feel somehow April has sprouted wings and is flying faster than I can keep up with on the calendar.  So many birthdays this month to celebrate.  Isn't this Angel of Blue lovely?  She flew to my home from Australia. My dear friend Judy (I know you follow her and all her amazing creative endeavors) knows just how to spoil me. This is a hand painted face that Judy does so well.   Thank you dear for allowing me to enjoy your beautiful work and this amazing little doll.

Here is her full length photo.  Beading, hand dyed lace and all created by Judy and her loving hands and spirit.  I feel blessed.

Judy also included this lovely large tag with lots of lace and beads and flowers.  This looks just like August to very favorite month.  Peridot and calm serenity.  I am so grateful for Judy's friendship and her generosity.

Now you all know I am participating in National Letter Writing Month (NLWM) this April.  My darling friend Daniella surprised me with all of these goodies.  Thank you dear.  Please say hello when you visit her link.  I adore the ATC and little card and will utilize all the card blanks and ephemera for making more goodies to mail out. Thank you very much Daniella for surprising me with "magic mail" in April.

As part of NLWM I received a surprise gift.  This little antique bottle with a message in it.  Thank you Debbie (I don't know if she has a blog).  Her card and envelope are very creative and show her passion of Paris.  This arrived from New York.

This postcard is very clever.  The sender actually went to an air and space museum to take a photo of a mail plane and create her postcards to send.  Thank you very much and I adore your clever creative style.
With my participation in NLWM I have kept myself overly busy.  I have mailed to Italy, UK, 8 Canada's, 30 States for a total of 126 pieces of mail to date.  And I am a long way from completing my list of 138+ participants this year.  Whew!  I may have to continue in May as April is "flying" right along.

Not much creating in my studio with all the mailings coming and going.  I did manage to make a few pendants just for fun and mail them.  Using ball chain in fun colors available at my local Ben Franklin's craft store, I included ribbon, lace, and buttons.  Just a few minutes to create and easy to mail.  I didn't get a photo of the others.

Here is a close up but the color is too dark.  I think you can see the idea.  What would you do to improve this look?  I thought they would be fun for Easter baskets.  Finding one inside a fun plastic egg would be a treat for lots of ages.

Speaking of Easter...this was some mail I sent out this past week.  I personally like the bunny foot so much I mailed one to myself.  lol  May you and your family enjoy a wonderful Easter with all that means the most to you and yours.  Mr. C and I will stay close to home this year.  Honoring the true meaning and somehow also eating boiled eggs (me only as Mr. C never eats them!) and chocolate...however not together. This month has gone so quickly I never even set out my favorite little Easter treasures.  Maybe next year...
Easter Blessings to each of you.  Creative Bliss...

Friday, April 11, 2014

Pink, Black, Bling...

Another month has zoomed and gone by and with that I have received my wonderful surprise package from the lovely Kimberly of ArtJoyStuff blog.  The ATC swap theme was Pink, Black and Bling. This may have been my very favorite so far.  (What?  I say that all the time?)  This is the bonus wrapping Kimberly included and I love the tag with my S on it.  Thank you dear for always being the best and most organized hostess.

These are the three extraordinary ATCs I received.  Top left is from Wendy of Frog Princess blog.  Thank you very much.  Left bottom is from Manuela of Vintagesavonette blog.  Thank you so much.  On the right is from Amy who currently does not have her blog working.  Amy really went over-the-moon with her packaging and the back of her ATC.  Thank you bunches.  I am so thankful to be part of this swap.

These were my little ATCs.  I made each one different just to be fun.  I really enjoyed this Pink, Black, Bling!

I packaged them in a little Pink tulle bag I sewed and tied them with black thread with a butterfly stamped from the same striped paper.

For my readers who wanted to see the California Poppies!  I took a walk and brought my camera.  The sun was so bright I couldn't begin to see what was on the camera screen however this photo pretty much shows the gorgeous bright orange Poppy blossoms.  And to think these grow wild all over California...where there is land free from concrete and asphalt.  I had lots growing in my yard after planting some wildflower seeds many years ago...however they are no more.  Must have been pulled out as weeds when not in bloom.    I keep thinking I should buy some more and plant them.  They are truly beautiful and one of the few ways I enjoy the color orange.
This morning I got up extra early and saw the most beautiful sunrise.  The sky was layered in stripes of pinks and blues.  It looked at though an artist ran a giant paintbrush across the sky.  Of course I didn't get the camera.  Some sights are for our inner peace and I truly treasured that sunrise this morning.  It gave me time to reflect on how life gets too busy and overwhelming and it is up to us to reign it in and find the calm and peace in each day.  I hope you are finding your inner joy each day.  Creative Bliss Abounds...

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

NLWM Feature Blog...

As my regular readers know I am participating in National Letter Writing Month (NLWM) all of April.
Our wonderful cheerleader and Creator of Cuteness is Lindsay Ostrom.  She has kindly featured my blog on her blog this week.  I am honored.  Thank you Lindsay.  This photo is her blog banner.  Please visit her and say hello.

I welcome NLWM readers as Lindsay has offered a prize for those of you who comment on her blog and here on my blog.  You will recognize this photo which is featured.  I do love unique cars, fast cars, slow cars, pretty cars, trucks...  Yes, I do love car shows too.  This was a concourse Mr. C was invited to participate in and we had a wonderful day visiting with others and seeing their prized one-of-a-kind priceless vehicles.

Do you recognize what these hearts are created from?  This was a very large frameable birthday card for someone special.  Okay...stop guessing.  I used paint chips for the hearts.  Bakers twine for the bow and tails.  This is still one of my very favorite projects.  I mounted it on mat board for framing.
Thank you to each and every one of you for visiting and commenting.  I just may send along something special as a complete unknown.  I like to reward and surprise my followers for their loyalty as opposed to doing "give-aways".  Blogs I follow that do "gives" may have a very few faithful who comment and then the minute they announce a give-away they may have dozens or hundreds of comments.  I like to keep it personal and intimate.  I hope you understand.
I spotted the fields of poppies I will take photos of later this week and share.  I did not have my camera with me today.  They truly are spectacular.
Hoping you all are finally experiencing Spring and Sunshine and Flowers Blooming.  Creative Bliss...

Monday, April 7, 2014

Quilts of Valor Blocks...

I am thankful for blogging as it has allowed me to connect with like-minded souls in so many creative venues. Kevin the Quilter put out a request for Quilts of Valor blocks.  Kevin had specific criteria for size and colors. Not being a quilter myself I did not have the proper fabrics. to my local quilt fabrics store.  I purchased 1 yard each of the four colors you see.  A solid red was not to my liking so I stepped up to this lovely batik.  Batik's are my new found favorite fabrics.  They cut and sew very well.  They also do not ravel like other fabrics.

After very carefully measuring...twice at least...I cut all my pieces.  Whew!  Kevin selected to have all donated blocks be done very simply with a stripe of fabric within each block.  Hmmm...had to use my brain and math skills.

Eight blocks of the gold fabric.

Eight blocks of the white fabric.

Eight blocks of the blue fabric.

Eight blocks of the red fabric. 
Thirty-two blocks completed. 
Today I have packaged them carefully wrapped in white tissue and sealed in a padded envelope.  I included a hand written note to tell of my gratitude and love sewn into each stitch for every service man, woman and dog who have allowed us to have our freedom.  This was a rewarding project that I am blessed to have been a very tiny part in.  Kevin's block drive continues a couple more months however I must now focus on other commitments I have made.  Thank you Kevin for sharing your project.
Our weather is perfect Spring Sunshine.  I would love to have more rain however none is forecast. California Poppies are sprouting everywhere and they are so beautiful!  
Please stay tuned for my next post which will update National Letter Writing Month of April.
Welcome followers and your comments.  I appreciate that you take your time to visit and cheer me on. Creative Bliss and Spring Sunshine Smiles...

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

April Peach Swap...

I joined A Swap For All Seasons and participated in the April Peach Swap.  This is an extra fun swap because Linda our wonderful leader compiles the list each month of who wants to join in the fun.  The actual swap is not with the same person.  I send to one person and an entirely different person sends to me.  How fun is this!  Thank you Linda.

Here are the workings of gathering my de-stash (part of the swap) to send along.  I did not take detailed photos of the package as I am certain my recipient will share what she received.  Hopefully I did okay.  This is only my second time to participate and I am still learning from what others post.

This is the package I received.  It came from Debbie of Kitten Creates blog.  Click on her link to see what she is up to.   So far I adore the packaging.  And as I am opening it Mr. C does not understand why I keep saying, "Wow, Wow, Wow!"  I feel like a very lucky girl!

Debbie really spoiled me with each and every treasure she included.  Her attention to detail and packaging is amazing.  I absolutely adore each and every item.  Thank you so very much Debbie.

As I have also shared I am participating in National Letter Writing Month in April.  Today I hand wrote and mailed 19 postcards.  They depict California and I sent them to participants in other states.  This is only the second day and I have mailed 32 pieces of mail to 22 different states.  I also must get busy with mail for Italy, the UK and lots of Canada's.  Follow us on Lindsay's blog to see the fun.  Lindsay is our wonderful Cheerleader and keeps us on track.  How could this not be fun.  When it becomes exhausting or stressful I merely take a break and do other laundry or cleaning or cooking...Oh let me get back to NLWM instead!  My desk is a disaster and it drives Mr. C crazy for its messiness however I feel it is organized and ready to write or color or mail something at any moment.  For me it is Creative Bliss!
Our snow continued on April Fool.  Then some more rain and now sunshine.  The snow is melting.  It got to a high of 48 degrees F today.  I prefer 80's myself.  Time to get busy...the days are rolling downhill very quickly.  What are you creating?  What would you like to be creating?  If not now...when?  That is my mantra.  It reminds me to stop and enjoy and be happy.  As Pharrell Williams sings, "Happy, Clap Along".