Saturday, May 30, 2015

Antiques Inside and Out

There's a stretch of little shops in Viking Village and this little antique/gift shop is among them.  I find that antique stores are not always the best lit places and this one was no exception relying a lot on the limited amount of outdoor light through the windows.  Still there were some very colorful (and clever) vignettes that caught my eye.

Some felt ornaments and sealife toys.  

Old sand pails.  (I've often seen these in shore-related magazines but never seen them in any stores so this was a treat.  They are not inexpensive!)

Old carnival/boardwalk games and whatnot.

This Bingo spinner was pretty unique I thought.

I couldn't resist taking pictures of these letters as they are the initials of the name of the school that I work in.  (Can't get away from it it seems!)

This colorful rooster was guarding the sidewalk.

And in front of one of the other shops was this sign.......................

Monday, May 25, 2015

Aboard the Nina and Pinta

On Saturday we took a ride to Viking Village in Barnegat Light to see the replicas of the Nina and the Pinta that were docked there over the weekend.

There was no good opportunity to take a picture of the full profile of the ships, but we were able to board each one and inside there were displays and information regarding Columbus, the ships, and the crew.  They even had help-wanted signs for people who wanted to be part of the current crew.

We weren't allowed below but there was information on what was under our feet.

Navigational tools - this one reminded me of a cribbage board.

It's called a Traverse Board

and closer......

Another called a Quadrant....

The opening in the front of the ship for the tiller which predates a ships steering wheel.

And other cool things hanging about.......

Telling us what more is below...........

And a little explanation about symbols that might have been used.

It was a gorgeous day - a bit chilly but sunny and breezy and relaxing.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Another 60th....................

Means another seasonal tree card.  I had an extra set of the square seasons already done so this should have gone a lot quicker than it did.  But then I decided to get a little involved with the background.

I took three inkpads - So Saffron, Wild Wasabi, and Marina Mist - and smeared them on my largest acrylic block.  Then I actually found my little spritzer on my work table (no small feat) and spritzed the inks.  Then I smushed the block, ink-side-down onto a sheet of Whisper White cs.  (This was actually the second try.)  I let that dry while I grabbed a handful of different green cardstocks and die cut a bunch of leaves.  

I skewed the tree squares across the length of the panel, popping up the fall one and I was able to slide those leaves under the squares.

The card base is Lucky Limeade which I think helped blend all those green leaves together nicely.

Tonight I was cleaning up my work table a little and decided to put that first experimental panel to use.  I had the other half-sheet of Lucky Limeade for the base and took a stencil that I had and sponged some So Saffron and Marina Mist ink lightly over the stencil to give the base some interest.

I attached the smashed ink panel and then added a strip of IKEA washi tape.  The leaves were some of those that I didn't use for the first card and the flowers are a new die set from Essentials by Ellen.  I added a few iridescent blue sequins and stamped the sentiment from Butterfly Basics.   Most of the time I leave off the sentiment if I don't have a specific event I'm making the card for, but this one is pretty generic and I'll be able to use if for just about anything.  

It was a crazy week for us last week.  A tree split in half late Tuesday night and took out our little bridge on the side of the house, but thankfully missed the house.  Thank goodness our neighbor heard it happen and he also helped HWNSNBP cut up and get most of it out of the driveway that night so we could get to work in the morning.  Then the next night our washing machine decided to call it quits.  

But we attended the party for the newest 60-year-old on Saturday and had a splendiforous time.  And on Sunday, HWNSNBP and I actually went for a bike ride - the first one I've been able to do since last year about this time.  Although it was quickly heating up and getting humid, it felt good to "have the wind in my face" and it was HWNSNBP who wanted to call it quits first.  He said his butt was sore from the bicycle seat, and I'll give him that.  And he does have to do all the work with the bikes and the bike carrier, so he had to work harder in that heat.  I'm looking forward to more bike rides soon.

Friday, May 15, 2015

Purple Wedding, Robins, and Oranges

Rachel was recently in the wedding party of a college friend.  She asked me to create a wedding card and told me that the bride's colors were purple and ivory.  I had a this card by Anja Curvers pinned on my Pinterest card board and added my own touches to it. 

I used my SU hearts embossing folder, added a lace band with a purple twine bow, and the little heart that says "Mr. & Mrs.".  And there are two layers of purple cardstock. 

Inside, since the card base was a dark one, I die cut a heart a little larger that the one on the front from the Very Vanilla cs for the message.

I haven't been spending as much time in the stamp cave and I would like.  Still doing therapy for my neck and arm twice a week.  I've mostly been catching up on my Zentangle calendar and working on a couple of upcoming projects.  My neck is starting to feel a little better so I should be getting back in the creative swing soon.  (Keep your fingers crossed. I would, but then with my luck I might hurt myself!)

Our custodian confirmed something that I thought was going on in our holly bush outside the front of the school.  There is a bird nest in there.  And there are babies!  These are robin babies determined by several clues.  1) A blue eggshell half was found in front of the other secretaries car parked not too far from this bush.  2) We watched a robin searching for bugs in the grass and stepped back far enough and waited long enough to see the robin fly into the chirping bush.  Yes, they are loud when they are hungry.  And it looks like they don't mind having their picture taken even though they are very well hidden in that bush.  (Just look at those spiny leaves!)

And one last photo for today.  I was thinking of taking up juggling. No, well yes, I would someday like to learn to juggle, but these oranges were brought to me by one of our cafeteria aides this afternoon.  She had at least a dozen in a basket.  Oranges and other things like cheese sticks, cartons of milk, other fruit that she rescued from going in the trash at lunch time.  She and the other cafeteria aides had seen, for many years now, the amount of food - good food - untouched food - that the students THROW AWAY every day after lunch.  So she started putting a basket out and tried to encourage the students to add to the basket instead of the garbage can.  You should see how much she saves from the landfill.

I'm waning fast this evening so I'll be on my merry way.  Please come back to visit soon.

Monday, May 11, 2015

Violets in the Driveway

 I took pencils to paper this afternoon to give the photo I showed recently of the crack in my driveway another life.

I do really love those confederate violets.  After my walk this evening I took a little look around at what was blooming and thought later that I should have taken pictures - maybe tomorrow.  It was getting late and the light was quickly waning.  

I know I will be frustrated at all the weeds though.  HWNSNBP has offered to do some weeding IF I stand nearby and tell him what's a weed and what isn't.  Um, yeah, no.  We'll have to work out some other system because the weeds are beginning to overtake some of the beds already.

Here's another view of the photo from the other day.  I'm thinking my drawing needs a little more color in the driveway - what do you think?

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Happy Mother's Day and a Sunday Tangle

The card I made for my mother for Mother's Day.  She loves butterflies and I really wanted to use that pretty butterfly paper.  

I got the gift of a little time to myself today to use some of my recent tangle practice to do a complete tile.  It needs a little bit more shading.  

Happy Mother's Day to all the women in my life.  You all nurture my soul.

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Clouds from Both Sides

Standing in the driveway, getting ready to take a walk I marveled at the dramatic difference in the western and eastern skies.

This was the view to the west with the sun setting and giving the sky an animal print-like quality.

This was the sky to east with the moon almost full but with such soft cloud shapes.

I'm probably one of a minority of people who actually enjoy weeding.  I find it very relaxing and therapeutic in some ways.  At least I did.  I'm not going to be able to do heavy weeding now, but I still love to observe the patterns of the leaves against either one another or against the rock as in the picture below.  The contrast in shapes and colors draw me in.  Sometimes, after spending a lot of time on my knees weeding, I would come into the house and if I closed my eyes, I could still see the patterns in my mind.  

I apologize for the grainy pictures as they were taken in low light.

The patterns of a solar light against the paving stones.  The trees have not yet bloomed full so this light still gets enough energy during the day to light up at night.  Soon it will have to be moved.

And one of my favorites - Confederate Violets growing in a crack in the driveway.  I find that some spring flowers are amongst the simplest and prettiest and I think it's a shame that we can't enjoy them longer, but then I realize that it always gives us something to look forward to and to try to make an effort to enjoy them while they are here.  Like a friend from afar that visits once a year.............

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Jingle Belles - We Wish You a Merry Sketch-mas Sketching Around the Christmas Tree

I had two ideas for this sketch which would have kept me up to the count with my cards but I only got one done so far ......

I used three different embossing folders for my background panel and added a dividing line of this cool woven ribbon I found in my ribbon stash.  And then I added this die cut poinsettia.  I curled the petals to give it some height and dimension.  The center is a trimmed down star with some liquid paper dots.  

I love this die, actually I love most of my dies and the only thing that I find a drawback about using them is the little paper "hairs" that you get when you punch out all the pieces.  The more openings in the die, the hairier it gets!  I usually sit there with an Exacto knife and scrape the openings and then turn the piece over and take a stiff stencil brush to the back of it to whisk away any stragglers.

Okay the, time to get this posted over at the Jingle Belles blog and to see what the other lovely ladies have created for this wonderful sketch (btw - great sketch Steph!).

Monday, May 4, 2015

The Big Catch and April Tangles

Yes, it's the happy fisherman....... finally!  He hooked an 11.5 lb., 30" bluefish in the surf on LBI Saturday morning.  I'm very happy that he is getting out there and fishing again after a long winter and shortened summer last year because of all my difficulties.  He filleted and cut up the fish and we took it to a friend who will smoke it. I'm told that bluefish of this size are very fishy tasting and if you smoke it, the meat becomes mellower.  

Now on to the April tangles.

April 1 - Equerre (Genevieve Crabbe)

April 2 - Afterglo (Carole Ohl)
April 3 - Box It Up (Alice Hendon)
April 4 - Mop (Damy)
Apil 5 - Loop (Amelie Liao)

April 6 - 'Brella (Frances Wright)
April 7  - Cloudfall (Lily Moon)
April 8 - Well-Mooka-Z (Sharyn Penna) this came out a mess!

April 9 - Hurray! (Agneta Landegren)
April 10 - Qian-long (Diane Tai)
April 11 - Rouche (Rose Brown)
April 12 - Farling (Deb Eichorn)

April 13 - Swells (Jennifer Hohensteiner)
April 14 - Scallops (Suzanne McNeil)
April 15 - Intwine (Helena Hadzijaneva)

April 16 - Daggerly (Carole Ohl)
April 17 - Ovy (Adam Roades)
April 18 - Paki (Lori Byerly)
April 19 - Vivi (Hsin-Ya Hsu)

April 20 - Kloorz (Sue Zanker)
April 21 - Zonked (Barbara Finwall)
April 22 - Gottago (Lianne Woods)

April 23 - BB (Official Zentangle)
April 24 - Mysteria (Official Zentangle)
April 25 - Pepper (Official Zentangle)
April 26 - Frondous (Official Zentangle)

April 27 - Signalz (Bev Ripps)
April 28 - Kitl (Jem Miller)
April 29 - O (Damy)

April 30 - Pea-Fea (Amelie Liao)

I've included the names of the tangles along with their creator's names (or those that had the step outs).  If you google their names (the tangle or the artist) I'm sure you can find more information.