Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Coming Across Some Inspiration

I had to go pick up my oldest from camp this past weekend, so we tied in a quick weekend trip to visit relatives.  We fit in an action-packed day full of non-stop activity.  Here are some things that we saw along the way.  Not, typical scenic shots, but some ideas about how to see things differently that I thought were intriguing. 

We went to a museum where they had a pretty extensive shell collection.  They basically hot glued these shells to fishing line, and back-lit them.  I think even without the backlight, it's a great idea!

We stopped at a cafe and had lunch.  Instead of standard curtains, they laid these fancy linens over the curtain rod.  They are all vintage table runners, and embroidered napkins. It looked perfect in this trendy lunch spot.

And how about this:  This floor mosaic was made by cutting stones in half, and then using the flat sides to create these fern-like leaves.  I'm not really sure how I'd replicate this one, unless someone I know owns a tile saw, and I'm pretty sure I may need to buy an extra diamond-tip blade, but it sure would be fun!

And speaking of inspiration, My Cement Birdbath made from Skunk Cabbage is featured this week at All Thingz Related! Look in the sidebar for me, but look eveywhere else for some other great ideas!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

The Kids Will Love These

There is something about things that aren't their "normal" size that totally fascinates kids, and maybe people in general, I'm thinking about all of those entries in the Guiness Book of World Records. 

We had pizza last night for dinner, but the kids and I put a new twist on it. 

We rolled out the pizza dough and cut it out with a large cirlce cookie cutter.

Then I let the kids put on their own toppings.  I found mini pepperonis, too.  The kids just loved it.


I sliced these little pizzas into bite sized wedges, and the kids were just so thrilled by it all.

I thought later that a giant cookie would have been the perfect thing for dessert!

Friday, July 16, 2010

Help! My Daughter Has Left For Camp!

My little girl has gone to camp.  I'm not really sure how all of this has come together.  I guess it was that her friends were going, and she really wanted to go, and she loved camp with a school group last spring, and she WANTED to go biking, hiking and camping.  (This is my girl that usually just wants to go to the library.)

So, she's off to camp.  There was such a flurry of activity in accumulating all of the things that she'll need, getting her packed (and re-packed) and checking (and double checking) that she had everything, that it feels like now that she's left, I have time to register the fact.

I've already sent her a sappy "I hope you are having the best time ever" letter.  I don't want to say what I really feel:  "I Miss You", in case that just makes her homesick and miserable. 

I hope for my sake that this isn't how all of the growing up and letting go with be, but I have a feeling that it will be.  A flurry of activity:  I can see us hurriedly shopping for sheets for college, and us running late to drive her there, and all in a whoosh, there is the drop off and the good byes, and then there is me sitting in the car wondering what happened. 

Any advice from anyone out there? 


Tuesday, July 13, 2010

My Dad's Book

My Dad's Book has been published!

Many of you know that my Dad died in late spring this year.  He wrote his own autobiography in January of this year.  I wanted to publish his words, about his life.  There were also some other notable writings that I have included in the book:  When my Dad was in hospice care, he was visited by a man who writes memoirs, there are several letters that are included; from friends and published letters about my Dad, eulogies, and poems. 

I addition, there many historic photographs that I've included as they relate to the stories that are being told, and others that I've included in a photo album style.  When my grandfather was young, he was a hobbyist photographer, and I owe all of these great historic photographs to him. 

Albert D. Croskey The Life and Times by Marjorie Recker | Make Your Own Book

I used Blurb to publish this book.  I have been very impressed with the quality of the photographs, the cover, in particular is just beautiful, and it feels nice, almost smooth and velvety.

It was easy to edit and there were many different page layouts that suited my purposes.

It's a great way to get yourself published!

Here's Something I'd Like to Try: Plastic Bottle Flowers

What an amazing twist on recycling!  These beautiful flowers are made from plastic bottles.  If you look closely, you can start to see the bottoms of all of the bottles stacked up.  Different sized bottles are used, and then cut into different petal designs. I imagine some heat is applied to get the petals to curl a bit.  The underside of the petals are painted in layers, so that the facing side is all glossy and stunning.

I looked around, and found  these beautiful flowers on Etsy:  They are made in the same way, only the plastic water bottles are left clear, and some swarovski crystal is added to the center of this broach.  They are just incredible.  You can find this and other amazing water bottle creations in Zebra 1684's shop.

Monday, July 12, 2010

A Lego Lover's Cake

My little guy(s) LOVE their Lego. I remember when I was growing up, my brothers would scratch through the big cardboard box of Lego pieces just as my boys do today.  My oldest son just found a Lego motor in the "big box" at my Moms, it uses 3 C-cell batteries, and turns a small gear, we estimated that it is 30 years old!  Does that make it Vintage Lego? 

We decided on a Lego theme for my recent 6 year old this year...mainly because all he wanted for his birthday was LEGO!

 So, a cake is born:  We used 2 sheet cakes, 9 X 12, and layered them, for the Lego brick.  Then, we used 6 cupcakes and turned them upside down for the Lego "buttons".  
We added a  real set of Lego people that lounged around the top of the cake.  My brother meticulously wrote "Lego" with icing on each of the "buttons" in the correct font. 
 My little guy just loved everything about it, including the fact that he got to keep the Lego guys from the cake.

Friday, July 9, 2010

The Perfect Gift for Kids of Most Ages

We have been away recently, and with the whirl of end of school, and spending some time away with family, this blog has taken a back seat.  I assure you that all of this travel has done nothing but inspire me.  My arsenal is full of ideas. 

Let's start with something that my kids (ages 6-11) had fun with the entire trip:  These Klutz facepaints. 

These paints are by far the nicest paints I have ever come across.  They glide on smoothly, they mix beautifully, and they are completely washable.  The boys enjoyed these as much as the girls.  They wanted rockets blasting up their arms, snakes slithering around their ankles. 

The girls loved the butterflies, and the "cats".  The book literally shows step by step how to create each of these designs. It's incredibly easy, and the results made the kids giggle with delight!   

The only thing I'd add to the set is a bit of glitter.  If you sprinkle it on while the paint is still wet, It would make the butterflies sparkle.