Wednesday, September 29, 2010

A Trip to Michael's and Some Jewelry for Sale

Brown Sugar and Spice Earrings
I think the inspiration wave has finally hit! I woke up yesterday with ideas for designs floating in my head (that's where most of my ideas come from, dreams.) Yet, before I could get all messy in the craft room, I had to send out the prize winner her package and then make a run to Michaels.

You see, I saw in the sales paper that they had the Industrial Chic line on sale and I knew for a fact that last week they had added some new pieces to that line. So, it was imperative that I head over there to check it out before I started on anything.

On my last Michael's excursion, I had noticed that they were re-arranging the jewelry section. "No big deal," I had thought. Big chain stores re-arrange all the time. However, when I got there yesterday, here's some of what greeted me in the jewelry section.
Big bins yet to be filled

Several whole empty sections of wall

And some new products, like this line of dapping tools and supplies.

When I checked out, I made sure to ask when they would be finished with the jewelry section. The cashier assured me they were almost done and everything should be in place sometime next week. I don't think I can wait! Has your Michael's been transformed? Have you seen some new items? Let me know!

I do need to head back there this afternoon to exchange an item that is flawed beyond use. No biggie. I'll just get another. Of course, this morning I also received an e-mail coupon for 20% off my entire purchase. That could be dangerous. If you aren't signed up for the Michael's newsletter, you really should. Those coupon deals can be pretty awesome!

Lastly, I've added a few more items to the shop and figured I better share before I immerse myself in my craft habit! ;) First are the earrings at the top of the page. And then there are these three beauties:
Pushing My Buttons Bracelet
Scaredy Cat Halloween Necklace
Isn't it Grape Necklace

Toodles!

Monday, September 27, 2010

Meal Plan Sep 27-Oct 3 (Chicken Pot Pie Recipe)

It's getting late enough in the day that I need to go ahead and post the menu for this week. Below is a picture of the meal we had last Monday . . it was as tasty as it looks.

I am again submitting this menu to Menu Plan Monday over at I'm an Organizing Junkie.

MONDAY

B: Cereal
L: PB&J, oranges, crackers
D: Chicken Pot Pie (find recipe below)

TUESDAY

B: Breakfast Parfait
L: Chicken Fingers and Tator Tots
D: Ham steaks, mac-n-cheese, green beans

WEDNESDAY

B: Pumpkin Muffins
L: Soup and Grilled Cheese
D: Dinner on own (Hope out)

THURSDAY

B: Cereal
L: Ham and Cheese Quesidillas, salsa, grapes
D: Grilled Chicken with lemon Basil pasta, green salad

FRIDAY

B: Omelets, toast
L: Turkey sandwiches, yogurt, fruit
D: Margarita Friday (Mexican out)

SATURDAY

B: Cereal
L & D: Out of house all day for wedding and football game

SUNDAY
B: Breakfast burritos
L: Homemade Pizza (dough)
D: Chili with rice and cheese



Here's my recipe for Homemade Chicken Pot Pie
INGREDIENTS
2 cans of chicken
2 frozen pie crusts
veggies (I use any combo of things: broccoli, carrots, cauliflower, peas, etc. These can be canned, frozen, or fresh. Be sure to drain any canned veggies though)
1 can cheese shoup
1 can cream of chicken soup (cream of mushroom or celery works fine also)

DIRECTIONS
Pre-heat oven to 350. Mix all ingredients (minus pie crust) together until everything is well combined. Pour ingredients into one pie crust and then top with the other crust. Be sure to cut an opening in the center of the top crust and seal the edges. Bake for about 45 minutes or until pie crusts are done and insides are hot.

And the Winner Is . . . .

My first ever Giveaway is now over.
Thanks to all who participated. I really enjoyed finding out what items in my shop you like.
So without further ado. . .
I wrote down the names

Cut them into strips, folded tightly, and placed them in a bowl.

Had Pat pull the name; and it's. . . .

Aardvark of Southern Fried Snark
Yay!! Congrats! And, I happen to know it's also her birthday. So Happy Birthday Ra and I'll get with you in one of the many ways I know how to and get the info I need from you to send out your prize pack.

Again, thanks to everyone who played along and keep your eye out for other giveaways in the future!

Friday, September 24, 2010

Kinda Like a Mixed Tape, But with Links

Holy Moley . . .where has the week gone? I can't believe it's Friday. That means you've only got a few more days to enter my button-themed giveaway.

I've got a mix of stuff for you today. I listed two new items yesterday.
This Blooming Dictionary Necklace
AND
this Button Dangles Bracelet


Now for some craft-related links. Today's theme/tag is general crafting:
  • How about some yoga for crafters.
  • Didn't we all grow up making salt-dough crafts? Was it just me? We had a whole Christmas tree covered with salt dough alphabet letters at one point. At least that's what I remember, because I used to lick them. Yes, that's probably where the brain damage originated. (of course we colored them with food coloring, not paint soooo. . .moving on)
  • Did you know that you can use styrofoam for stamping/ print-making. It's true.
  • Here's a link to some links of some general projects to make.
  • Check out this video on how to make a photo transfer with packing tape. WARNING - the link takes you to a page that's just the video and it starts right up. Adjust your volume accordingly!
  • Lastly is this cool origami site. It's completely in Japanese, but by clicking around in it you'll find animated videos of how to fold a ton of different shapes. It's pretty neat!
Now for some just plain fun links (not that the craft links aren't fun) for "Feel Good Friday"
One more reminder for the GIVEAWAY . . .this may be your last reminder. Go on and enter now!

Monday, September 20, 2010

Button Bonanza and a GIVEAWAY!!

I've gone just a little button crazy.
If you've visited here or my Etsy shop before, you probably know I incorporate a lot of buttons into my work.
I especially look for them when I go thrifting. And boy howdy, did I score big last week. I found this drawered container of them (with the above button cards inside) as well as this PILE of buttons.

I played around with my button stash all weekend into a delirium, and walked in to this pretty pile on my craft desk today.

After all that, I had to go to Etsy today and create my first Treasury, which I named "Buttons on the Brain"

I don't even sew. . .It's an addiction, an obsession, a craze!!
Since I'm cruising on a bit of a button high right now, I thought I'd roll with it and hold my very first GIVEAWAY!!!
Here's what I'm offering:
- an adjustable button pendant necklace (made by me)
- a mixed bag of buttons
- three button cards

So you want to enter? Here's what I need you to do. Go check out the CraftyHope Etsy shop and pick out your favorite item. Then come back HERE and leave me a comment letting me know what that favorite item is. That's it!! I'll be drawing a winner Monday, September 27th so make sure to leave your comment before then! Best of luck to you all!

Meal Plan for Sep 20-26

I cheated a bit for this week. We didn't eat all the stuff I had on the menu last week (for one reason or another), so I just transferred it over to this week. As such, I'm not going to post it over at OrgJunkie this week, but I will share it with YOU.

First, I have to let you know that last week we tried the Pasta Carbonara and the Cauliflower Gratin and they were both well received. I do have a few comments on both of them.
Pasta C - I ended up zapping the bowl a few minutes (1 1/2) in the microwave before eating it to make sure the eggs were definitely done.
Cauliflower - While this was DIVINE, I think I'll go for a less pricey cheese next time.

Now for this week's menu
MONDAY
B: Cereal
L: Frozen Pizza
D: Pork Loin, Fresh Green Beans, Long grain and wild rice

TUESDAY

B: Breakfast parfaits, bagels
L: Cheese Quesidillas, Salsa, Fruit
D: Out with friends

WEDNESDAY

B: Cereal
L: Tuna Noodles (this is just tuna salad with egg noodles), Fruit
D: Chicken and Mushroom Alfredo, Broccoli

THURSDAY

B: Cinnamon Rolls
L: Turkey sandwiches,crackers, fruit
D: Hope will be at mom's, Pat on his own

FRIDAY

B: cereal
L: PB&J, Fruit, Pretzels, yogurt
D: Margarita Friday (out for Mexican)

SATURDAY (GAME DAY)

B: Spiced Pumpkin Muffins
L: Chicken Fingers, tator tots
D: Homemade pizza (using homemade pizza dough that a friend recommended, I'm going to use wheat flour for it though)

SUNDAY

B: Omelets, toast
L: Soup and grilled cheese
D: Beef Stroganoff, Peas

So that's it. Hopefully it'll all get made so I can try some more new recipes!!
Some of you have let me know that you are enjoying this so far. Keep those comments coming in!

Friday, September 17, 2010

Someone's Hosting a Giveaway (It's not me!)

I'm just popping in to let you know that The Lampwork Diva, Cindy Gimbrone just realized that she's been blogging for FIVE WHOLE YEARS!  As such, she's hosting a giveaway of some fantastic beads to mark the occasion.  
Seeee. . .

Hop on over there soon, because your chance to enter ends Monday, September 20th!!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Mixed Media (crystal) Bracelet Video and Instructions

So, yesterday I made a craft video.

Disclaimers:
I admit I've never been one for cameras, but you never actually SEE ME on the video.
I do need some practice as there are a LOT of "ummmm"s and "and then"s.
As well, I recorded way more than I needed to and then had trouble cutting it down. I was successful in finally getting it under 15 minutes.

After all of that I think in the future I may try another video. I did enjoy most of the process for making and editing it.This is a teaser of the complete project. You'll have to watch the video to get a better look!


Anywho. . .here's the video. Below it is the materials list and the basic instructions for the project (just in case I lose you in the video)


Here's the instructions
Materials:
decorative paper
"crystal" beads
1 inch circle paper punch
paintbrush
gel medium
scissors
fine sandpaper
q-tip
alcohol ink
T-pin or straight pin
bead reamer(s)
painter's tape or masking tape
Triple Thick sealer
9mm jump rings
6mm jump rings
toggle clasp
beading pliers

Basic Instructions:
1. Punch circle from decorative paper and glue paper face down onto bead with gel medium. Clip paper so it lays flat on bead.
2. Apply a layer of gel medium to back of paper, let dry, and clip excess paper from around bead. Apply another layer of gel medium.
3. Using a pin, poke through the beads and the paper to clear the bead holes and ream the hole a little to make hole the proper size. Sand the sides of the paper to remove loose pieces.
4. Use q-tip to apply alcohol ink to back of paper. Cover bead holes on front of bead with tape.
5. Apply two layers of triple thick to back of bead (allowing first layer to dry before applying the second)
6. Remove tape and ream the bead holes.
7. Use larger 9mm jump rings to attach the beads to each other and add the loop part of the toggle clasp. Use 3-4 6mm jump rings to add the toggle bar.

OPTIONS:
- apply paint, alcohol ink, glitter, doodle, etc to front side of paper before adhering to bead.
- use paint, glitter, aluminum tape, silver/gold foil, etc to decorate the back of the bead (rather than the alcohol inks)

I hope you enjoy making this project, but sincerely ask that you not sell your copies. This is my design.

Please Let me know what you think of the video and the design. I would really appreciate some feedback! THANKS!!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Gratitude, a Teaser, and Links (oh my!)

I sold another few items on Etsy yesterday and then took some jewelry to my Mardi Gras meeting as well as wore some of my jewelry. I got tons of compliments and a nice warm, fuzzy feeling. It helped me realize how much I have to thank you. My friends on Twitter, Facebook, and IRL (in real life) are the ones who have really helped encourage me and push me to this point. As well as becoming my customers. I truly and sincerely appreciate it. THANK YOU!!!

Today was spent on a wild hair. I started working on a project yesterday and shared this picture on Facebook.

 When I got up this morning to complete the project, I suddenly decided to try and video the process. After completing the taping, I spent the afternoon/part of the evening learning to edit video. I plan on maybe uploading it to YouTube later tonight and then sharing it with you tomorrow. It's not great and was definitely fun to make, but I've got some learning to do. I'll tell you about later.

Now, for some Crafty Links. Today's tag? Sewing. I'm no seamstress myself, but I do have two sewing machines that I WILL learn to use at some point. So, I've been saving these links for that day. Of course, some of these also relate to embroidery as well.
  • How very cute are these embroidered plushies from Pimp Stitch? I'm so glad they've shared the tutorial. One day . . .
  • I SO WANT this selvedge dress made by RicRac. So cool!
  • This fabric scarf holder would look so great behind my front door. It's a good thing A Box Living made it a tutorial!
  • A rag-rug type fabric bowl? Be still my heart. Thanks to CraftStylish's tutorial I can may make my own at some point.
Lastly, here are some 'wild, wild Web Wednesday' links
Hopefully I'll have a video for you tomorrow. Wish me luck!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Let's Spice It Up With a Dash of Everything

September in the south is such a tease.
Let me just say that I LOVE the summer: being able to go to the beach all season long, warm rays on my skin, kids excited for their freedom. However, down here in Alabama it is SWELTERING HOT for 4-5 months. If you're not going to the beach, the river, or a friend's pool it's miserable to go outside. Yet, in comes September on Summer's boot heels, bringing in just a touch of cool air in the evenings. It's not quite enough to enjoy being outside, but just enough for me to start envisioning camp fires and evening walks and cozy sweaters. A TEASE I tell you!! Can you tell I'm ready for a bit of Fall-like weather?

Anyway. . .I listed a few items in the shop yesterday. I figured I'd show them off!!
Witching You A Happy Halloween Brooch
Miracles and Magic Necklace - this piece is two-sided. Follow the link to see pictures of the other side!!
And now for some links.
First some Crafty Links. These are just some of the ones I have tagged with paper or papercraft!!
And for some random-stuff-I've-found-on-the-internet-and-must-share-links:
  • These photorealistic paintings are AH-MAZING!
  • Here are some of the geekiest tattoos you'll ever see.  Some of them are actually kinda cool. I like the Love/hate one, just not the placement of it and the dot-to-dot one. Which do you like?
  • Redesigning a room? Remodeling your house? Just want to make some changes in your living area? Roomle helps you do these, apparently.
That's all I've got time for today, I really should get some work done before my meeting tonight. Of course, first I have to  make the tough decision of what to wear. Do I dress in the business-ish way THEY expect or lean toward more of an artsy apparel that I would prefer? I really do need some new clothes at some point. Gah! I guess I'll decide just before I need to leave, as usual. You know, I'll have to see what kind of mood I'm in first!!
Toodles!

    Monday, September 13, 2010

    All Over The Place

    Don't you just love randomness? Here's a ton of it for you!!
    I FINALLY got in my craft room today for a few hours and when I left it, this is what was on it.

    Of course, my shadow (Asia) was there the whole time to supervise.

    I've written and re-written this about six times in my head and twice more on the computer.
    Let me just say: I save links. LOTS of links and I'm ready to start purging some of that information here.
    What I'm sharing today was originally intended for my other blog, but I've since given that up to just post here.
    These are SOME of the crafty links I have saved of some cool projects and inspiration I've found.
    Tonight, I just randomly picked a topic - collage/mixed media/decoupage and these are the links that I've tagged with those subjects. Enjoy!!
    Maybe the next time I throw these links at you I'll give you some more information. Maybe.

    Meal Planning for Menu Plan Monday (Sep 13-19)

    I know that cooking doesn't EXACTLY fall into the realm of crafting, but for me it's definitely a chance to branch out creatively. So, hopefully this post falls in line.

    I've been following the feed at I'm an Organizing Junkie for some time now (over a year probably) mostly for the Menu Plan Monday. I recognize that weekly menu planning does take a little time out of my schedule, but it's so worth it when I'm not running to the grocery store every day like I used to. Now that I actually have the time to make out my plans, it makes my day and week go so much smoother. I admit that Pat and I may not always stick to the plan, but if we skip a meal I have planned it goes on the menu for the following week. It really does make life a little easier. I do plan for all meals (B=Breakfast, L=Lunch, D=Dinner) and snacks since we are home all day long and I want to make sure we have enough food. I'm sure there's more I want to say about menu planning, but I'll save that for another time. For now, this is my first submittal for Menu Plan Monday.

    MONDAY
    B: Cereal
    L: Leftovers
    D: Tacos, Corn

    TUESDAY
    B: Peanut Butter Toast, apples
    L: Soup and grilled cheese sandwiches
    D: I have a meeting, so it's dinner on his own for Pat

    WEDNESDAY
    B: Cereal
    L: Bean burritos, fruit
    D: Crockpot Chicken, Cauliflower Gratin, Yellow rice

    THURSDAY
    B: Breakfast parfaits, whole-wheat bagel
    L: Pasta Carbonara
    D: Pork loin, fresh green beans, long grain and wild rice

    FRIDAY
    B: Cereal
    L: Turkey sandwiches, fruit, pretzels/cheese crackers
    D: Out to eat - Mexican

    SATURDAY
    B: Eggs, bacon, toast
    L & D: Unsure (will be at Mama's for MawMaw's birthday most of day)

    SUNDAY
    B: Cinnamon rolls
    L: Ham & Cheese Roll ups, fruit
    D: Chicken Alfredo, broccoli

    SNACKS FOR THE WEEK
    Banana Bread
    cheese crackers
    nuts
    fruit
    granola bars
    yogurt
    cheese

    So that's it. It's nothing special really. But I know how much others sharing their plans has meant to me, so I figured I'd get in on the sharing!!

    For my regular blog readers, please let me know if this is something that interests you or not. You know I'm always shaking things up around here!!

    Wednesday, September 8, 2010

    Instead, I'll Distract Us with Somthing Shiny

    Now don't go getting all upset with me, but today is the first day in WEEKS that I've been up and out of bed before 9:30AM. I'm actually hoping this trend continues. It really does make the day a little longer when you get out of bed at a reasonable hour. And while I really should be doing THIS

    OR THIS

    Instead, I'm drinking THIS

    and writing THIS (after a eating a think piece of banana bread, slathered in butter)

    I'm thinking that since I finally got up "on time" I really shouldn't do anything to scare my body back into the bed on day 1. Of course, as the weather is starting to turn cool (HA! I live in Alabama, it won't be 'cool' for MONTHS) my mind wanders to riding my bike in the mornings. . .  One day. Maybe.

    So instead of doing what I should, I just wanted to make sure you saw the two new items I posted in the shop yesterday.
    First is one of the soldered pendants I made in my Pantone experiment
    I'm calling it "Smile Cupcake" even though the other side relates in NO WAY.

    And second is a Halloween bracelet made from a disc you got a sneak peek of last week.
    I thought the name "Pumpkin Perch" was witty, but I've got a weird sense of humor.
     I've got a few more items to list today, but other than that I'm going to work on getting some personal requests made today. I've got quite a few friends that have asked about me making or fixing some of their jewelry. I want to go ahead and get that done before I get distracted once more.
    I'll probably be listing the new items in the shop this evening, so check back!!

    Sunday, September 5, 2010

    Holiday Weekend Indeed - A Good Start

    I don't know if I've ever mentioned it, but Pat and I don't have people over to our house. Really! Almost all of our friends have kids, so it's easier to just go to friends' houses. As far as family, we just tend to go over to their houses. This week, we decided to order the Alabama game on Pay-per-view to ensure that we got to see it (I'm obsessive about my Alabama football.) and ask our family (who are also big Alabama fans) over to watch.

    We chowed down on chips and guacamole, crackers and hummus, pound cake, and beer.
    As well as Pat's favorite, Taco Soup!

    It also gave my mom and step-dad a reason to stop by my bother-in-law's house on the way and pick up this!!

    I LOVE this chair! It was my uncle's and the BIL is afraid that the kids will tear it up.
    I'm a little afraid our cats will tear it up too. But, I'm so glad to have some extra seating, especially something so gorgeous (and COMFORTABLE!! - I'm sitting in it now!) I think I want a couple of small colorful pillows for it, but for now . . .it's great just to have it!!

    Anyway, I thought I'd check in real quick. I've sketched out a ton of jewelry designs over the past two days and really should get to work on them . . . plus the several items I have to list . . .too much to do, and it's a Holiday Weekend. Oh well, what's Labor Day without a little laboring?

    Friday, September 3, 2010

    Some Pretties Before Football Starts Tomorrow!!

    I've been busy this week and got two new items posted in the shop today. Hopefully I'll be able to post a few more tomorrow. . . but I'll be on a college football high tomorrow and might not make it that far. So for now, bask in what was listed today.
    Violet Femme Earrings
    Drop By This Halloween Necklace
    And if those don't strike your fancy, there are still many other pieces in the shop. Drop on in!!