Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Day 37: I DID IT!!!!!!!!!!!!

Can I get a Woo Hoo?  Woo Hoo!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I did it!  I set out on a goal to update my blog everyday for the month of October, National Miniature Month, and I did it!  You have no idea how crazy excited I am to have accomplished this goal.  Your probably bored silly with some of what I've written this month, but I have to tell you, this little blog has become extremely therapeutic for me.
Referencing back to yesterday, I'm sure your curious what the wood is turning into, unfortunately, you'll have to wait to find out, because although today was a semi-productive day in the studio, it was also an emotional day due to a 2nd interview my husband I guess you'll have to wait to find out more on both topics :)

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Day 36: I'm back in the mini saddle again

Do I really need to go further in depth on this one?'s wood!  Wanna guess what it's gonna become?

Monday, October 29, 2012

Day 35: Inspiration strikes...another conundrum created

So we're sitting on a plane, on the runway, in Ottawa, Canada, when inspiration strikes.  I always find it crazy how inspiration strikes at the strangest and craziest of times.  Luckily this time my husband is sitting next to me, as we are just deadheading this flight, due to all of our flight cancellations today.  On the "lucky for us side" we are getting done with work about 4 hours early today, which is usually the hopefully we can find a flight to commute home on...O the trials of a traveling life :)

Back to my when I work flights I'm always scouting for magazines people leave behind, A) because I'm too cheap to pay what they charge for magazines (that aren't miniature/craft/art in genre) because most of the time I'm disappointed by the number of advertisements and the lack of content I take away from it...2) I usually end up reading things I would not have set out to read, thus learning something entirely new or outside my frame and 3), I rarely have a 3, but 3) I admit, I love the gossip mags...but...well....see A.   :)

SO, I ended up with a few magazines this trip, one being some fashion magazine that would never even factor into my life, in fact usually I will just leave these behind for someone else to have and hopefully enjoy (which BTW after I read them, I leave them on the next plane for another to enjoy for free also...although sometimes there is a page or 2 missing, if I need to have something....although what I normally do now is photograph the info (recipes for example) that way I have a digital copy of it which I can slide to my iPad and just pull up as reference when I get home).  Where was I, O the fashion mag, so as we're sitting here this morning I pull the fashion mag out, and about 3/4 of the way through it hits me...
I N S P I R A T I O N!   My husband and I have been daydreaming about this miniature brew pub with brewery for maybe 12-18 months, and all of a sudden it just clicks in to place as to how I want to build it.  Your probably wondering what in a fashion magazine could inspire a brewery?  Well an article was about some modular buildings or something, I didn't read that article, I just looked at the pictures,  and then on the following page was a picture showing a bunch of pallets...and from those pictures (none of which are anything like what we are thinking) BOOM, inspiration!  C R A Z Y !   I bet there's a shrink out there that would love to examine my brain and be fascinated with how crazy it works...I'm not always soo sure it's properly hooked up, but I thank God all the time it works the way it does, cause it sure works for me :)

So now I have yet another conundrum....sit on this inspiration till I finish one of my other 4 projects I have started, or barrel into project #5?  How many projects do most miniaturist/artist have going at anytime?  Is there a normal? I'd like to think its completely normal and further more I'd prefer to believe that it's actually best to have multiple projects going for 2 reasons A) I'm usually most productive when I have to much going on and 2) it seems that I go through inspiration points with projects and so I can just flow from project to project FOR different projects, which always gives me something to work on....and the more I seem to do, the more inspiration seems to be created.  Besides, now that I think about it, I haven't worked on my trunk project for probably close to a year, and honestly, there's very little left on it I want to do, but the few things that are left...I just haven't had a desire to do.  Wierd. 

So as I'm writing this, I'm looking up and spouting random thoughts to my husband, and then he just looks at me and saids "Your really excited about this aren't you?"  I respond "ya...but why do you say that" and he saids "cause it's just funny how all of a sudden you just get in this great mood and you get soo excited".  That about sums up miniatures for me.....they put me in a great mood and they make me excited!

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Day 34: Hurricane blows books back into action

Before I left on this trip I was printing books for my shop, as I knew I had this 18 hour layover in Ottawa....and with the hurricane about to hit the East coast (we were suppose to work flights in and out of New York and Philadelphia tomorrow, which as expected have been cancelled) so I figured I would have some down time to maybe get the books cut.  So here I am, sitting in a hotel room, and about to start cutting and making books again :). I really need to get my book cases built so I can get an estimate of how many books I will need to fill the shop :). My husband thinks its funny that I pack projects....I can't imagine not packing projects.  As long as I can remember I've been packing more things to do than I'd ever have time to do, no matter where I'm going....when I was young and we'd go to the cabin for the weekend, I'd pack 2 weeks worth the projects and supplies.  I imagine I'm not the only one in this hobby that's like this :)

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Day 33: The lazy part of me wants to come out

Ya ever have those moments where ya just wanna skip the whole 'pride of making it yourself ' part of a project and purchase something you know you can make and be proud of? I'm having one of those, and strangely I've already purchased the copper coupler reducer thingy for the base of my cappuccino maker.  Here are my inspiration pieces....I don't know who they belong to, as I found them in a google search, so if you have any info on any of them, or another you would wanna share with me, please please please share 

I did find a video online, which when I have some time at home next week I'm hoping to get to...cause really, I just want it done...cause I'm excited to get going on the coffee bar part of my project.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Day 32: On the road again

Well again here I sit on an airplane...wishing I was walking into my studio to install the flooring in Sophie's books, Crannies & Coffee...or working on making the coffee espresso machine...or using the grey clay I picked up the other day to make hose connections, a gas meter and electic box for the exterior of George and Annabelle's house....but I'm not, I'm sitting here daydreaming. 

Thanks to the amazing digital times we are in, thankfully I have roughly 80-85 miniature magazines on my iPad, which is awesome...but kinda a tease also, because I can get great ideas and learn lots, but I'm a hands on person, and knowing I'm on the road for the next 4 days and won't be able to actually work on anything is horrible.  Does anyone suffer from hobby cravings that can't be satisfied?  How do you cope?  What do you do to get through?  This must be how addicts feel

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Day 31: Martini's slow the progress

Well this week hasn't been as productive as most lately, mainly due to 2 different sets of friends in town and the husband being home for 2 days....which mean lots of fun visiting...and a night that included 2 to 3 too many martini's, which meant a very unproductive following day :)
Just in case who ever is reading this hasn't done a brick job (and remember this is my first attempt), I thought I'd show a picture of how I laid out the project.  I have never done a project where I didn't put it together first, but I had asked some people in one of my online groups how they start/do projects, and got some amazing tips, and the older I get, the more advice I use.  So, I bricked the inside first, as I want the walls to be completely bricked.  I love the outcome, there are many flaws, although most I'm ok with, as it was the look I'm going for.  Some flaws I fixed, and others will be behind things in the finished project, so I just didn't stress about them.  Overall though, I love things soo far.

I then moved on to the outside.  I'm attempting to do the 'patches of bricks' look, with stucco.  So I did large spots of bricks and I'm going to stucco after the project is put together, cause I know how to do that already :)

Now that I'm getting closer, I put some thought into flooring, I think this is the look I'm going to do.  It's suppose to be like the trendy re-purposed or refinished painted concrete look.  I imagine this old building would have concrete floors, so having them resurfaced would make sense :)

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Day 30: A full mini month

If the average month has 30 days in it, well then I have made it a month in blogs....luckily in my world, a day is not always measured by hours or tracked by a normal calendar :)

To give you a little sneak peak at my 1st attempt at masonry work....

I am going for a old brick building look, this was Pre-sanding, dry brush painting and some touch- ups.  I'm super excited about my 1st results though, I will definitely use this technique again, hopefully more practice makes better :

Soo strange, I posted from my ipad last night and the picture didn't come through..yet today I went on the ipad to the blog and it was there..come to my computer, it's not.  very very wierd..hopefully it "sticks" now :)

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Day 29: O' How things change

So at 8pm last night I was frustrated and feeling 2:30am when I went to bed, I was feeling very productive :) Somewhere along the line I started bricking the inside of my shop, working on books and making a decoration for Norah's room.
Here is where I got to, it still need some work, but lots accomplished.
This will be going into the baby's room, however since it will be difficult to photograph in the room, I thought I better take a pic. I got the little frames in the jewelry section....I love the trend of the bead/jewelry, it's my new favorite shopping area for miniature finds.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Day 28: Frustrated, Chaotic, & Unmotivated

Name 3 words that describe me today....Frustrated, Chaotic, & Unmotivated! After being gone for 3 days and wishing I was home to work on things, I would have thought today would have been awesome and productive, instead it was semi-productive and frustrating.  I attempted to figure out how to do the inside layout of my project, which made me more frustrated than anything.  I did figure out that my dormers won't work, so I will be going with some skylights to lighten up the inside. 
I managed to get the base coat of paint on all the pieces and most of the trim painted...I really like the black and burgundy colors I chose...hopefully the exterior work compliments it..when I get motivated (and the nerve) to tackle it.

Over the weekend I did a lot of thinking about George & Annabelle's exterior, I decided they need some meters and a hose, etc.  I picked up the hose reel at Little Enchantments when I was in Minneapolis this weekend (And a few other misc outside things) but decided to make my own hose, I didn't like the one they had, it had gold ends on it, and I want metal (which I think I can make out of clay) besides, they were asking $4.50 for the hose...I got wire at Lowe's today for .60 and I have the clay, so my thriftiness kinda won out :)

I'm also feeling kinda chaotic in the head.  I think I have too many projects going or on my mind.  Usually I do better when this is the case...and I've been really productive lately...maybe it's hormones, I did have my 1st hot flash Saturday morning in like 12 years (and that was the only one I've ever had)....being a women isn't always easy...and neither is growing older :)

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Day 27: The look of crazy I sometimes get from people

I'm not home, and I haven't worked on anything in 2 to 3 days now (as I haven't been home) and I'm starting to go through withdrawal. 

I'm thinking about the college visit my daughter and I did Friday in L.A.  We toured FIDM, which is the Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising,  I loved it soo much there that I actually text my husband and asked if we could move to L.A. so I could go there (it's not too late to go back to college is it?). It was kinda funny,  anyway, so we get started on the tour, we get to the2nd floor and the elevator opens and there is a display case of small chairs.  I pop out to check it out (my eyes probably popping out of my head) and immediately say to the tour guide "these must be 1/24" scale?"  And she looks at me and saids "ha?" with this look on her face that's perplexed, and kinda seems to ask "are you crazy lady?" I seem to get this look often...I consider it an honor now, like I'm forcing people to actually turn on their brains and use them.   Well of course I'm thinking, the college had a large display downstairs where they had done Barbie and lots of designing goes into Barbie, and i think Barbie is 1/24" scale, so of course it's 1/24" scale.  Well she just had no idea, so I just let it go...she did know that the chairs were purchasable for $150 each....they were cool, but not my scale, or I would have considered :)  

During the tour, we saw these amazing class rooms with huge work tables and the best sewing machines, and then they had sample rooms where there was nothing but fabrics and notions, and the library was amazing.  Everything was amazing!   I wanted to just make something while I was there...and learn more stuff to of course :).  

After the tour we checked out the "book store" which was really more like art store and sweatshirts.  I got a new clear ruler with the grid on it, I lost mine last week, except my old one was only 6" and this one is 12"...I wanted the 24" one, but I was nervous if it would fit in my suitcase.  Then we went into this store they have that's samples and misc clothes I'm guessing students have made and accessories that are junky,etc.  we found miniature doll forms that you can design on, so the little girl in my daughter and I came out, and we each got one.  Then I noticed a fabric room, it was small, but hanging in there were sample cards, and long story short, I grabbed I think 10 or 11 (with 3-5 fabric pieces per card) that were all small print, light weight fabrics (they were a whopping .33 cents each!)  I can't wait to add them to my stash of fabric.  The coolest part of this hobby sometimes is the "finds" and the fact that small stuff requires small amounts, which makes keeping things organized, easy and fun for me....I think we've already discussed my organizing tendencies.  

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Day 26: The sound of inspiration

As I sit here on the plane from Los Angeles to Minneapolis, I first thank God for the nap he just gave me, which is fairly rare on airplanes.  I napped somewhere between an hour and an hour and a half.  The strange part is that I slept about 8 hours last night, I guess I'm still making up for the 90 minutes or so the previous night :).  Staying in L.A. Last night makes me think that maybe part of my sleeping problem is volume.  Volume is not a "thing" in my life.  I'm a visual person.  I raised 4 kids, I don't think I really heard much from them (maybe I just learned to toon them out early, cause kids are loud), I lived on a busy street at the University of Minnesota when I went to college (amongst other places while in college that were not so quiet), I play poker for a part time job, and most of the time I don't even notice the sounds in the casinos, and when I go to sleep, I like the tv on, and I set the sleep to turn it off after I fall asleep.  My husband prefers the tv off, so either I attempt to get to sleep before him...although lately he's been good about going to sleep while its on (maybe I'm retraining him and didn't even know it :).  

When my husband and I got married, I moved from the cities (and a rather large suburb) to a rural area, and our home was in the woods with acres of no one...therefore very quiet.  I had great intentions for living there, I was gonna live secluded, and do all the projects  I always wanted to do.  Well other than yes I did start that 1st house, not much got done.  I had no studio in this house, and infact really no place to set one up where I felt inspired and that worked.   We sold the house, to prepare for a job move (O' man is that a L O N G fact it's sooooooo L O N G we are still only probably in chapter 6 or 7 of it and we have no idea how long the book is)....but the Cliff Note version skips to about chapter 5 or so, we moved to LasVegas.  We settled into this amazing condo, it (it being the grounds and community) is amazing.  The pool is spectacular, it's gated and safe and.....quiet!  Well except for a small dog that ever since it got to be turn off the AC and open the windows weather, I have learned about.  Anyway, I love our condo!  We chose a 2 bedroom (we have to have a place for guests :) but really it's a studio and work space (the guests get one of those fancy schmancy plug into the wall huge-ass blow up air mattress's with the memory foam's actually amazingly comfortable.  But the best part, when we don't have guests, you'd never know its a guest room.  I spend hours in this room every day.  I'm soo crazy inspired in Las Vegas and in our condo that I don't leave somedays till I have to for something...not joking, I couldn't even tell you what it's like outside a lot of days till I decide to get some fresh air about 5 or 6pm and go grab the mail, and then I'm like, wow I think it was a gorgeous day and I missed it, but I didn't, cause it was just amazing inside :) 

Even with all this wonderful, I still have a problem....maybe my mother was right, I will never be content, (well that's a first, I haven't actually had anything to say about that person that's been nice in years...but she and her evil ways  are another story, and since I try to focus on good and happy, I'll just honor the commandments by keeping quiet about that horrible women....don't think bad of me, it's just a fact of life that A) not all moms are good and 2) I guess not all people are born with the ability to unconditionally love others.... I don't get it, I can't imagine not loving my kids and husband as much as I fact sometimes I can feel the love grow again and then I'm like wow, where is this new love gonna go, but then it always seems to fit, in fact  lots of times it inspires even more growth...its like the most amazing circle :). 

Where was I?  O yes, sleeping!  I cannot sleep!  The only nights I get quantity and quality, is when I have taken something or I'm just beyond the point of functioning, cause I'm soo over tired.  Last night, in a busy area, where I could hear lots of outside traffic, sirens, people, etc, I slept awesome.  I sometimes would hear something, almost feel comforted by it and doze into a deeper sleep, and I love that feeling where you know your sleeping, you think your waking up, then you drift back off.  Such a cool feeling.  Now maybe I was just that over tired last night???  But it's poised a big question to me, do I sleep better in a louder environment?  Did I mention that while I'm working on projects all day, I don't have a tv or radio on?  In fact there isn't either in the studio room.  So maybe the noise I need when I go to sleep is what it takes to switch my brain off?  But, I do love waking up to who the heck knows, and why am I writing this and more I importantly, why are you still reading it?  

Friday, October 19, 2012

Day 25: LA's My Doll's House

Well after a long action packed day in Los Angeles, I'm going to only say this much...My Doll's House in L.A. (The only mini store I found) was adorable.   Being I'm flying to Minnesota before heading home, I only purchase a set of stair sides and 2 door knobs...will tell ya more about the store tomorrow...and our other great day highlights :)

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Day 24: Primed and Scanned and Signed

Today's title pretty much sums up my days accomplishments....well I guess I would need to add "got caught up on some much needed sleep by forcing myself back to sleep MULTIPLE times between 3 and 11:30am", but other than that :)  Before I went to sleep last night I did a test 'bricking" on a scrap of wood, I've never done real bricks (well by real I mean the kind ya use the stencil to make and they have dimension..I've only ever done stucco and paper brick).  Woke up and loved both samples, now I need to sample some colors..yeah...things are progressing.
With this progression, I figured it time to do some prep work on the wood, so I got it all primed!
Over the past few days I've spent WAY TOO MANY hours working on the sign and name for my project, and something just hit me late last night (or early this morning...who knows).  I was close all this time on the name....but now I've got it!  and regarding the sign, well I guess looking back now, I was never close on that.  SOO...Long story short, the name of my shop is:
Sophie's Books, Crannies and Coffee
For those that don't know...not sure why you would, Sophie is my middle name, and about half my friends call me Sophie (it's actually what I prefer :)
and since I'm spilling the beans today, I may as well show you the 1st mock up for the store front sign
It's a long ways from great, but I'm on the right track finally :)
Also today I finally crossed 'Scan in all the frick'n boxes I've been saving, taking apart and flattening so I can make printies from them'.  Wow was that way more work than I really wanted to do today....and I haven't even cropped the pix, scaled them or put them in the art program yet.  Why do I get myself into these projects?  I swear I have soo many things going right now that if I had 5 of me, we couldn't get everything done that I'd wanna get done if we worked full time for 3 months.  O' well I guess it keeps the phrase "I'm bored" out of my life :)
Before I leave for the day, I'm going to confess, tomorrow may be the 1st day this month I don't get a blog in.  I'm meeting Macy (my baby :)  (she's 17 and a senior in high school) in L.A. to look at a college, which means an early morning flt and then I'm thinking we are going to just fly to Minnesota from there, as I need to be there Sunday for my Grandsons 2nd birthday'wait, I almost forgot, the cool thing is, while in LA tomorrow, I'm hoping to hit up some mini shops :)

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Day 23: Designing a sign

Well Casey (the husband :) was home today, so I didn't spend much time working on mini stuff.  I have been working/searching/brainstorming on a sign for my new project.  I would love to hear how people design signs for their projects that are shops.  I'm really quite frustrated with this part.  I google searched images of all kinds of different signs, store fronts,etc to get ideas.  I have a few in my head now, then I get into my art program on my computer and nothing seems to work out or make since.  I'm actually thinking of asking my daughters cousin (who's a college grad graphic designer without a job) if she wants to help me.  I'm not great at asking for help though (I'm getting really good at asking for advice though :)  I will see her at my Grandsons birthday day Sunday, so we'll see.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Day 22: Annabelle's splurge

Thanks to my little shopping trip to Hobby Lobby the other day, Annabelle got a new purse today. 
This was my 1st attempt at making a purse :)

Monday, October 15, 2012

Day 21....I played "mini" hooky today

How many things in life have I done without ever reading the instructions?  The answer to that number is probably close to the National Debt!  Although I have found lately that the more I read instructions, the better things turn out, the more I actually learn, and the easier it gets to read instructions next time.  This morning I made coffee...and I followed the instructions on the package (never done that before). I think I've been making coffee wrong my whole life, cause today's coffee was much better.  I think when I was younger, I just always thought I knew it all (or most of it....) I bet I'm not the only one that is/was that fact one of my off-spring, a very strapping young man who shall remain nameless (couch-Cody) is VERY much that way...something about the apple and the tree......

I find in my hobby lately the more instructions I read and the more research I do, the better the results, maybe that's why I've finally had such great success's.

Well since I played "mini" hooky today, I don't have any projects to update you fact late last night (about midnight) I got in an organizing mood, I could seriously organize and re-organize sometimes for days...anything..anywhere....I couldn't imagine living without my labeler....I am seriously sick in the head when it comes to organization!  Anyway, so I spend a few hours late last night organizing some old kits that I had bought on eBay about 2 years ago, only to get them and find that out of the 10, not one is complete, and in fact out of the probably 30-40 projects that are total in the 10 boxes, probably only 1 or 2 has all the pieces, but not wanting to toss the whole lot (and I didn't realize the crappyness of the purchase until it was beyond time to complain) I had just stuck it away.  So last night I start organizing it all, and ya know what I found?  That amongst all the crud, was stuff that not only can I use, but some stuff I actually need!  For example, super fine sandpaper, tons of scrap wood (great for book inserts), lots of hardware, some paint brushes, some printies and some kits I think I can salvage and make something out of (cause I'm sure the day will come when all my other projects will be done and I'm searching for something to do.....hahahahahahahahaha).  Moral of my story, sometimes when we think we've been 'taken', we just need set the junk aside until the time comes when we look at it with fresh eyes and realize, there really is some treasure in the trash.

Now, getting back to my morning (well for most normal people it was afternoon) I think it was laced with crack...cause I challenged the toaster to a race (I had to empty the dishwasher...the toaster had to toast my bagel)...... and I won!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Day 20: For a non-finisher...I sure have been finishing a lot of projects

I admit, I am a self-proclaimed non-finisher...and non-habitual forming person...and yet lately, I have been on a roll of finishing projects.  The way I see it, take for example George and Annabelle's house, when it comes down to it, it's really a serious of small (med & lg  :) projects, and due to season changing, etc, it's a project that will probably never be 'complete'.  With all that said, I've had all kinds of inspiration and ambition with their house lately. 
When it comes to forming habits...I stink at habits!  They say you need to do something for something like 21 or 28 days or something in order for it to become a habit...I usually make it half of that, and yet here it is the 14th of October, I set a goal to blog ever day of October, National Miniature Month, and thus far, I've blogged everyday.  Remarkably, I've actually remembered everyday also, but don't worry, the daily reminder is on my calendar just in case :)
Remember the flower box I built last night?  I painted it today...

I did a distressed finish on it, keeping with Annabelle's style :)
I still have to fill it with flowers.
Among some misc projects today...along with waiting for AAA to come jump my Jeep...remember the transmission rebuild last week? well today it required a new battery....I admit, I teared up in the garage when the AAA guy told me, I just can't believe how much money we have
put into a vehicle with 54,000 miles on it....
are they now making automobiles like washing machines....
disposable after 4 years?
Sorry for the rant, well the bulk of my day was spent on the baby's room
(Norah should be joining George & Annabelle's family sometime soon :).
Let me give you some background, other than the bathroom, which I finished ( read that correctly...finished!) over a year ago, the baby's room is the only room I've done anything with...and what I had done before, I'm super unhappy I did, and how I did it.  HOWEVER, the crappiness of whats been done and the way it's not holding up so great, does fit with the theme of George & Annabelle's house...a super old house that's being remodeled by George & Annabelle.
Here is basically where I was at the beginning of the day today
Yesterday I laid the old wood flooring...this is the only room in the house where the wood floors could be salvaged, there is some wear on them, and a few have warped,
but they have been white washed for an update.
I added the trim, and them put the stuff in the room
*note, I'm missing the trim around the door ways, as I don't have it on hand...and
Hobby Lobby is closed Sunday, so I couldn't even go see if they have what
I want for it...even when I could get my Jeep started :)
Well I can't explain why my computer sucks as bad as it does...but it does!  So now all of a sudden, the pictures won't stay turn correct again...Sorry.
Anyway, I made this Shabby Chic tiny table and the lamp.  I added a little fabric to match the window seat cushion.

Obviously this is the window seat and cushion. 
The pillow and teddy were items from a swap I received.

I also made this Shabby Chic table, the clock, lamp and toys. 
The Kleenex and rose picture over the crib were 2 more swap items I received.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Day 19: I can't stop...but I don't think I want to!

Woke up today about 11:15,  I know that sounds late, but since I didn't get home last night (or this morning I guess) until almost 4am...11:15 isn't that bad.  I had a good run at the poker table last night...I have the best job!  I decided last night to upgrade my art program software, it could mean a little extra work redoing a few things, but everything going forward will be in the new program and hopefully my days of NOT RESPONDING are over!  It does however mean learning a new program, which I'm not super happy about, but I think it will be worth it.  So anyway, I bounced out of bed this morning, jumped online and purchased it.  While it was downloading, which seemed to take forever, I decided to work on George and Annabelle's yard....specifically the tree in their front yard.  However when I went in the hobby room, there sat the apple pies I baked last I glazed them.

I changed the shading after the first, and I like the results much is also 2 cranberry sauces, still not sure how I feel about them.

Back to landscaping...after much thought, I thought it best to attach the grass to the board before adding the tree, and since the tree still needs leaves, I thought...good timing to attach the grass, it will have time to set. I then drilled a hole through the board for the tree.  I decided against permanently attaching the tree to the board, as unless it HAS TO BE, I'd prefer it be easy to pack for when we move again.

I then got busy on finishing the tree, I have never used any model tree scenic products before, so this was all new to me. It was SO easy though! Just in case your curious, or considering making a tree, here is what I did....first you take Hob-e-tac and brush it on the branches, let it sit for 15 minutes, and then take the clump foliage (I de-clumped most of it) and for lack of a better word, smash it on the tacky (and when I say tacky, I mean TACKY! my fingers were almost stuck together when I was done...I work messy :) branches.

Here are a few pics, of the tree complete. I can't seem to get a decent picture that does it justice. 
I then attached the fence to the 1 side, and reset the picnic table :)
During all the waiting and drying process's of all this, I also cut 24 pieces for some pictures I need to mount, I did some touch ups on the bathroom door, along with some other misc things. 
Next thing I know, it's 8pm and I've been thinking about making dinner for like 2 hours, now I'm over hungry and I have a headache from not eating for hours and then what happens....Inspiration strikes!   I had taken some left over wire and foliage and made a shrub for under the front window, but it wasn't great, so what idea pops into my head, a flower box!  So what do I it!
Sorry, the glue is still wet in this pic...I wanted to get to the dinner portion of the evening :)
Well I know there is more that I worked on, but I'm going to try taking just a little break, have a glass of wine and relax..which really means have a glass of wine, surf the Internet for ideas and scope eBay for stuff I need (hahahaha I just said "I need" :)
O' before I go, thought I'd share a picture of my Grandson that my daughter sent me tonight.
My husband refuses to go by Grandpa, as he's young and well....ya know :)  Anyway, Colton (our grandson) calls him The Captain (my husband is a Captain (pilot)). 
I think it's just plain 'ol funny...
we are Grammie and The Captain. 

Friday, October 12, 2012

Day 18: It's beginning to smell a lot like Thanksgiving

It's ironic, not only have I been working on Thanksgiving projects for 2 days, I went shopping today...that's something I usually do around Thanksgiving, but NO Christmas presents were purchased today (a few little birthday presents were bought for my Grandson though...he'll be 2 in 10 days..WOW!) I did however buy a few things for my I guess it was kinda like Christmas for me :) Since I've read soo much about these little bottles everyone keeps talking about at the dollar store, I decided to check it out...ya know what....they are AWESOME! A) in them are no hole beads, and I've been looking for red everywhere and 2) the others have tiny little shaped in them that look like candy. Seriuosly, I'm in love! I bought 4 packages, I may have to go back just in case they run out and don't get anymore in.
I went to Hobby Lobby to get more 'pie tins', well actually they are bottle cap bezels, but they are amazing for pie tins, and the best part, normally they are 6 for $1.99, today I got them for 50% off. The line they are from is called The Jewelry Shoppe Findings, and in that line are some great little crimps that I think will be perfect for hardware on some purses I want to make, and they have these tiny little bottles in different shapes (I bought item #700831, Short, Round Glass Bottle, if you wanna check it out, the pic doesn't really show them well..if I get less lazy sometime I will photograph outside the package).

Last night and today was my first attempt at Pies and Cranberry sauce.  I think the coloring on the 1st pie is to brown, so I made the next more reddish...But once again I'm too lazy to take another picture.
I'm not super impressed with the cranberry sauce.  I ended up making 3 to try different finishes on, and I'm still not super happy.  The 1st I used Sculpey Glaze, the 2nd I made a lot more translucent and used Berry Red Glass paint on, and the 3rd I finished with a clear glass paint over.  I think I'll wait to take a peak tomorrow with fresh eyes and perspective :)
Also today when I was out shopping I got some supplies to make a pergola and the wood to start the patio for the contest I just have to learn how to build a pergola...I guess that will be a good thing to research tonight while I'm playing poker...cause I need to go play tonight...I haven't played since Monday and ya can't make money to pay for all this fun if you don't go to work :)

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Day 17: Something Old Something New

Woke up today to rain...I love waking up to rain when I can stay in bed and just listen to it rain for a little while.  Something rare happened this morning though, my husband (who usually wakes up a few hours after me when he's home...and never stays in bed after he wakes up) woke up about the same time as me, and he just stayed put....what a wonderful gift!
My day was spent working on a ongoing project (something old) and a few new little projects for some swaps.  One of the themes of the swaps is Thanksgiving dinner table.  I did some inspiration searching last evening, and came up with LOTS of ideas, it most never happens that I get just one idea for a project, man would that be nice....and a time saver!  Anyway, some of the brainstorm and investigating ideas were....The turkey, cranberry sauce out of the can, a table runner, a fabric basket, candles wrapped in the letters for Thanksgiving, activity books for the kids, wire wrapped candle center piece, the little place cards for the food, a recipe box with recipes in it, and I think that was the majority.  O' pie and or dessert :)  So as you can see, too many ideas! 

While out shopping a few weeks ago (I think at a dollar store) I got this canvas you can put through your printer, that I haven't even tried to use yet.  Well I got thinking about these little fabric baskets, and I thought...Hey, maybe that canvas would be the ticket to making those.  So I found some fabric samples I liked, I put them into my art program, printed the canvas back and front, square punched it, folded it like the tutorial said, and added some ribbon for a little handle.  I think they turned out adorable!  I'm now very inspired to see what else I can do with this canvas.
 The reddish one is an unfinished one upside down.
It's hard to make out the pattern on the inside, but it's a fall pattern with pumpkins
Another project that benefited from the canvas today is some Fall wall art.  I started making wall art a few weeks ago, and today I spent some time making some changes to how I make them. 
They are much nicer now :)
I finished my day cutting and folding books while watching a movie this evening with my husband (he's finally at peace with the fact that I can't just sit and watch TV, I need to be doing something else at the same time....there it is... my "something old" never ending book obsession.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Day 16: Planning and Planting

Spent the majority of my day today on the back of a motorcycle, driving through the Valley of Fire, it was an amazing ride and an amazing day to do it. It did however mean that I didn't get to working on any projects until about 5:30pm. I spent most of the evening doing more research for my new project, along with doing the layout and cutting the correct holes for the doors and windows.
Here's the beginning :)
After that, I decided to finish the taping of the tree, here is how the bare tree looks propped up in front of George and Annabelles house
That's all I have for tonight....

Tuesday, October 9, 2012


I started my day doing about3 hours of, but exhausting.  I've listened to what I've been told as far as how others do projects, and I've decided a few of their things are awesome!  So, I've implented them in my process.  I started a few nights ago when I started a 3 ring binder with a file folder in it specially for this project.  I've been adding ideas and notes to it ever since.  FYI, I had already started a 'inspiration' file in my pictures file on my computer, so I guess this project has 2 folders :)  Maybe before I'm done I'll print the pic and add to the paper file, for a complete record :)
Anyway, the box was here when my husband and I got home from dinner, so I broke it opened (good way to start :) and dryfitted the few pics and then kinda went through my thoughts as to what I had invisioned, and then brainstormed with the pieces that I've picked out of my 'inventory' of previous supplies.  After just a few modifications, most of the pieces are going to work fabulously.  I'd show some pics, but I'm too tired and tomorrow ;)

Monday, October 8, 2012

Day 14: Growing a tree

Well after all my crud happening last night with my computer program, I decided to just call it a night and watch some TV...and of course surf the Internet for who knows what, along with catch up on reading some others blog reading.  Then next thing ya know, inspiration finally struck for my tree I've been dreaming of for the front of George and Annabelle's house (I've been searching for a tree everywhere, and haven't found one I loved...and that was big enough), and so a week or 2 ago I picked up some craft wire/wires and some brown floral tape, and last night it hit me how to create the tree.  Now this may be super basic for others, but for me, who's never been "floral" and has no "green" thumbs, after I started on this.. I was proud. 
Here's how I started the tree, I took 35 straight wires, wrapped them together and then starting at the base, I started wrapping the whole bundle with brown floral tape and then started 'branching' out and adding in smaller branches along the way.
The more I add, the more full the tree gets and the more personality it continues to get.  I worked on it for about 2.5 to 3 hours and then called this project a night.
I know it doesn't look like much, but in person it is crazy cool. 
I'm going to be kinda "stuck" once the tree and branches are done though, as I have no idea how to do leaves and advice is very welcome :) 
If you don't feel comfortable commenting advice here, please feel free to send it (or any comment, feedback or advice on any projects) to my email address
As I've mentioned multiple times, I'm very new to all this, I want to be successful with my projects and I welcome advice :)
BTW...I can't believe I've hit everyday this month for updating..I'm not a habit person, so this is an accomplishment for me...I hope I can make my goal for Oct :)

Sunday, October 7, 2012


Well thanks to some prompting and some inspiration from my swaps I received, I decided to redo all my book pages.  A) they needed to be organized by genres and 2) I wanted them laid out better.  So I got going into the project, got about 3 hours in and had been saving randomly when.....program fail!  SO without getting too frustrated I spent 2 hours figuring out what didn't get saved and fixing, etc. however now my program is plain ol' NOT RESPONDING!  That's the error message I get and every time I attempt to open a file, it fails.  I've spent 2 hours now troubleshooting it.  So needless to say, I'm frustrated!  I wish I was just a miniature amount of frustrated, but I'm not...I'm a Gianormous amount of frustrated. Beyond this work in my mini hobby, I got my hobby room cleaned today, so there's my report :(

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Day 12: Are you tooning in to see if I went to San Jose today?

If you are, then let me keep you in suspense a bit longer....just kidding :). I'm currently sitting in the McCarran airport (that's Las Vegas) waiting to board a Southwest flight for....San Jose! I got home last night, I didn't go into the living room, I didn't even look at our hobby room door, I DID attempt to pass go and collect $200, but apparently it was after bankers hours, so I just crawled into bed. Then I admit, I got out of bed to toast a bagel (nourishment was needed), I brought the bagel to bed, ate it, zoned out on some tv, and fell into about a 9 hour slumber. I awoke about 45 minutes before my alarm went off...tried to will myself back to sleep, which didn't happen, so I jumped in the shower and said...."I'm going to a mini show!" Yippy!!!!!!!

Skip forward 7 hours....I'm on the flight home to Vegas. WOW... My day was amazing! My brain it over-floweth with ideas. 1st things 1st though....wanna see a few pics I took of some projects on display? I thought so :)
I took pix of this travel trailer, because every time I see this kit built, I have to take a picture, so someday when I get around to making mine, I will have lots to reference.  Also, it's made into like a food truck...that is SO COOL!  I love this idea!

I LOVE bricks!  I have them painted in the living room of my real house.  I love them in miniature houses and scenes, I also love the sign and the foliage on foliage the right word here?

 These secret books are amazing! Check out her website if (and probably when) I venture into another size or trying something new, I will be ordering a kit from her.  Maybe I should start my wish list for Christmas, although who would I give the list to, Casey & I usually get something practical for a joint a transmission...hahaha I'm already making jokes about it.

This pic didn't turn out well, but I took it as I was considering
making a Halloween scene at some point.

This is very cool, and I love the use of the truck!

Anything french, bistro, or boutiquey is high on my list of likes.

the last 3 are the "Chinatown Green Dragon Restaurant" by MeShelle Keel.  I just LOVE it!  The basement, the kitchen, the exterior...really, it's just amazing!

This armour was stunning, again my pix stink, but you get the gist :)

"The Tuck Box" by Don Silva is just great. 
I love the curved roof in front, the sign, the awning, just everything!

I forgot to photograph who made this candy shop, but it is just candy-tacular!
I love the Carmel apples, especially given my recent failure in them :) 
Her use of different beads and such for candy was ingenious, and very inspirational!

This was the 1st picture I took (Believe it or not), and mainly because
1 project I'm starting now is going to have a metal or copper roof :)

So here is how I tackled the showroom floor, first I went through fairly quickly and just got a basic visual of what was there (I skimmed a few booths more than others), then I went through a second time at a leisurely pace, with the end intention of then going for lunch, thinking things over and then going through a final time slowly and doing my shopping. Well that 'plan' sounded good, except at the end of the 1st row (the 2nd trip through) was this little gord birdhouse on a stick that I just fell in love at 1st site with and well for $8 it wasn't worth risking someone else snagging it up. Then about half way down the last row (still on the 2nd trip through) I was soo hungry that I had a headache, so the last half row didn't get very much attention, but that was ok, there wasn't much I was interested in there anyway.

I returned after a much needed lunch break and started to shop. Let me tell you something, shopping is hard! Two reasons: A)The selection and quality of most everything there was amazing and 2) while I was at lunch they called to inform me my Jeep repairs were done and the bill is a little over $ I'm now feeling even more thrifty than I normally am, and let me tell you....I'm a thrifter! Baring this in mind, I resisting purchasing a few things that I loved, but knew they would be for a future project that Casey and I are planning, and I even if it was something that was only like a $1, I still really made sure it was something I truly loved. The other thing is this, I'm SO into making things myself right now for projects, that its difficult to purchase ready made things. I love/hate that.

O' I forgot to mention, I won a door prize! It's this tiny zoo??? from Kummerow's Studio of Miniature Design.
I have no idea why this picture won't turn! I thought I had solved that problem.  O well.

Wanna see what I purchased? Good...

From Dragonfly International I got a set of 3/16" keeper kutters, which I've been considering ordering online for a while, these will be great for my clay obsession. I bought a laser cut measuring stick and cutting board. She had a couple kits (like the doll truck) that I really wanted, but I talked myself out of..darn budget :(. I bought a new fine tip glue bottle (my last one the top malfunctioned...not a glamorous purchase, but a needed purchase) and I purchased 1 sheet of boutique boxes to make for a project.

From The Stick People I bought this gord it!!!

From Stewart Dollhouse Creations I purchased a laser cut log cabin dollhouse for Norah :) and frosting kit. I REALLY wanted the cupcake kit, but it was out of my budget :(

From Sir Thomas Thumb I got 5 canes, I've never used canes before, and over been considering ordering some to try, so how cool, now I have waiting for the mail or paying shipping!

From Hestia House I purchased this wood sign (I broke my rule on this one, it is for a future project, BUT, it's also a little gift for my husband, so it's ok to brake the rule if its a gift :)

And finally, from M & M specialties, I bought 2 counters for my new project. Yes, 1 of these I could very easily make myself...the other has plexi in it for glass, so that's outside my skills...but honesty, for the purchase price, it's just easier to focus on how I'm going to finish them vs taking up my valuable time building them from scratch. Besides, I just love them. Ironically, i have 2 at home I bought about 20 years ago that for some reason, given everything I've gotten rid of, those have stayed with me..and they are still unfinished still...oops.... They will get put to use soon though, I promise myself :)

So you see, I didn't get crazy, in fact I feel kinda guilty for not purchasing more from the dealers, but for my 1st show in about 20 years, I got a feel for it, I learned I wanna save some cash to attend another one (and not have to be on such a tight budget), I grabbed some business cards so I can do more searching online and more than anything, I got some great ideas and I need more inspiration!

Now my plan for tomorrow is this....stay home all day and night and work in my hobby room! Being I live in Vegas, this next question is completely legal...who wants to place bets on that actually happening?