Tuesday, October 28, 2014

A Fall Walk

Social Media ....is the social interaction among people in which they create, share or exchange information and ideas in virtual communities and networks.

For the longest time I couldn't remember that short phrase .... social media.  It reminds me of Social Studies and the Media Room in Junior High School.  But I guess that could be a realistic definition. 

Its the 'new' way people interact and communicate with each other through electronic devices.

Back then is was a battered and used social studies book with worn edges and dog eared pages, our name signed in the front.... and forbidden pencil markings in the columns. And 'media' or audio visual was the place the teachers' pet got to wonder the halls taking the long route to the library to 'check out' the overhead projector or film reels or even the portable TV on a stand.

UPDATE: I can't be positive the upload is visible, I tried.... if not you can click http://scontent-b.cdninstagram.com/hphotos-xaf1/t51.2885-15/10731474_864491416917947_1548609675_s.jpg to start my fall video.... and or.... if you are viewing this blog post on the current day I posted, there to the right -----> in the Instagram spot.... click on the picture with the beautiful fall tree!!!
So, if the 'new way' works.... with my little portable phone, I was able to take pictures during one of my recent walks on a beautiful fall day.  I took the pictures and added them to a 'free' application that put them in a sequence and added music to make it into a 15 second movie.  That I then, was able to load back on to my computer, where I could upload it into my blog, for anyone to click on to view.
And a day in my life is captured as simple as that... and it now is spread around the world in a matter of seconds.  Who would have thought 35 years ago, social media would be one of the ways we communicate in 2014?

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Weird & Confident

Always creating .... something!

Although I'm not blogging as much as I once did, I still am creating. Here are some of my latest creative greetings!!
I have some really cute fall patterned papers that I wanted to use.  So I made a couple of these Have a Good Day cards.
Although this one above doesn't look like a card, it actually folds flat, but when opened becomes a pop up box card. Some fav person of mine is working with a circus theme for their homecoming this year and I thought I would try to commemorate the idea.  I had so much fun making this. 
I really don't want to tell you how much time I spent with the details!!!  But while the boys were sitting just watching a football game this weekend.... I was keeping my hands busy and created this while I listened to the game.
Here is a high end copy cat card.  It's water colors and markers.  I loved how it turned out.  Fancy fashion fabulous for a friend who is turning fifty!
I found a quote the other day that I'm really, really liking.
If you're going to be weird, be confident about it.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Happy Fall Y'all

The boys have been missing for a while. 
But I am getting back on track to do more of the things I love to do ...  instead of cleaning and dusting .... I am creating and crafting.
Stay tuned .... because every day there is a new POSSIBILITY!
Find your SHINE

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

It's All Greek to Me

When your kids get to a point in their lives... when you remember it like yesterday that you were experiencing similar situations, you know you've gotten to the next stage in your own life.... you're getting old.

It's not that I feel like I was 'just' in college, but I remember some of the old days.  I know my college experience was definitely NOT like the days my kids are experiencing in their universities.  I went to a small private Lutheran College, barely 1,000 students.... not some big university that has it's largest student population ever, over 30,000+(that's grad and undergrad)

I don't recall ever attending a football game or any other sporting event (I was a commuter student, so I'm sure I had something better to do off campus).... let alone plan an entire day of tailgating, socializing and drinking ... before filing into a stadium filled with over 71,000 current students, alumni, parents and friends. I don't think my parents ever owned a t-shirt, sweatshirt or a banner with my college name on it!!!!

But here we are, attending our 2nd college football game of the year.  The Missouri Tigers vs the Georgia Bulldogs.  The opposing team won BIG time.... 0 -37.  I didn't feel a great loss, since I'm not that vested a Mizzou fan.

We went to CoMo (short for Columbia Missouri) to visit Sissy for Dad's Weekend.  Her Sorority, Pi Beta Phi  (PiPhi for short) wanted to recognize their dads (the one's who assist in paying the tuition????).  They also celebrate parents weekend, mom's weekend, homecoming and whatever else when there are home football games.

It takes the best to raise the best.
Learning about Greek Life is an eye opener, at least to me. 
Jeff was a Lambda Chi Alpha when he attended Indiana State University. Not every University or College recognizes Greek Sororities and Fraternities as a major part of their campus organizations. At some schools it's a big deal, at other schools they hardly recognize it.
To many they say, what's the point?  It's snobby rich kids.  Or they exclude people.  It's a secret organization.  It's just plain weird.  I guess it can be all of the above ... but not every chapter's sole purpose is to have the best parties.  The friendships and camaraderie they establish is second behind what they stand for when it comes to volunteering for a cause or a philanthropy awareness.  Sissy's sorority has strict rules on academics and they need to maintain a high grade point average to participate and continue in the organization.  Alumni are a great support to the sororities often recommending 'sisters' for placement and employment and fundraising!

There are a lot of beautiful spots around campus to take pictures.  One place is in front of the 6 Iconic Columns.  These are the only remains left after a major fire in1892. Read about it here .

It was a nice fall weekend to drive the 7-1/2 hours to visit with our beautiful, smart and fun daughter.  We are so fortunate and blessed to have the opportunity to experience some of the college LIFE through our children.  Their POSSIBILITIES for their future are endless.

Wednesday, October 08, 2014

The Right Tools

I admit it ... I know I shouldn't ... but I'm honest!

I copy!

I copy .... a lot!

If I see something that I like, I want to re-create it.

(shameful to 'steal' I know, but I think I'm pretty good at it)

But I've had a lot of practice. Having the right 'tools' also helps!

It still is the decorating craze, but I finally got on 'board' ... to chalk board spray paint. 

I had to see how it worked, if it worked and if I liked the outcome.  I bought at resale, a cool piece of wood.  Later I discovered it was a cast off door to a cabinet.  But it worked for me and it was the right price.

I bought some black chalk spray paint from Hobby Lobby and painted my board.  I realized when I went to doodle on the board that I didn't have any chalk.  An idea came to my head ... I had sidewalk chalk in the garage .... leftovers from years gone by.  Ugh, but the chalk was too fat to draw on my 10" x 12" board.  What to do?  I found a teeny tiny piece of used chalk in a box of school supplies.

My idea came alive! Well, it actually was a Pinterest picture that I was able to re-create.

Unfortuneately, I had to go back to Hobby Lobby and buy a box full of chalk.  I never ever bought white chalk before.... you know it's that kind of thing you used to find on the hall floor in school after the janitor swept up!!! :0)

I liked my first board so much that I had to find another one!  A bigger board to fit more words.  I think the above frame was to one of those country calendars that had the movable tiles for each date.  It was missing the calendar and the pieces, but the bones of the frame and the back board were perfect!!!!
I spray painted the back board and was able to 'sign' away.  I could just erase and put up new quotes each month, or for each season, or for any event.  I loved it!!!! 

Then I saw something.
I wanted my writing to be more precise.  I wanted to have thin lines.  I wanted to make swirls and dots. Then I discovered that there is a Chalk Ink Marker. 
And I bought it.  Spent 6 times as much as my box of chalk, but I love it! I used the spit and finger test to see if the ink would erase from the board, and that seemed to work.
I re-did both of my signs and am happy with the results.  It looks like chalk, just a little more defined.  I'll let you know if with a little water and a rag, if it will wipe clean for next months' quote.
Another Pinterest success!!!

Tuesday, October 07, 2014

Girls, Girls,Girls

Yes I know.... (sorry dad,) I have been slacking writing to my blog. 

The excuse is that my job has gotten in the way of some of my fun! 

Although I only work part time, I still have my full time job at home.  Now, leaving time for creative fun has moved further and further down my list of things to do

Oh, I'm still creating something EVERY day and I'm making creative greetings, crafting, accessorising, reading, crocheting etc.... I'm just not documenting all my 'stuff' like I used to.

Sometimes my cards are so precious to me. So know, they are really coming from my heart. Now I understand you and some of my friends when you say to me ... the cards are too cute to give away to just anyone.  The person has to be special.
I've been trying to create simpler card designs... but then I think... the card is missing something. I'm not giving it all when I'm creating.
In today's post I have 3 different girly cards.
The first one above... I stamped the background paper.  Then I paper pieced her 'clothing' with patterned paper, and then I painted a simple face and hair with acrylic paint. I added a special heart ♥ to each girly girl in the series of cards I made.

I love these cutsie girly girls.  Just a cartoon doodle.  (Not my design.  But super easy to copy with my own PR touch, ha ha).  And with scraps of paper all in shades of pink, I made the quilted pattern look on the background paper.  She is doodled with pen and ink. And I just love the sentiment: You're my little sparkle & sunshine

And this is my latest take on the girly girls .... an angel. 
This card is inspired by Sissy's sorority Pi Phi's.  They are angles.  I painted over embossed pattern paper for the background.  Paper pieced book paper for the wings and patterned paper for her dress, and then she is painted with acrylics.  I was working on shading and highlighting. And made special focus on her expression .... so angelic!
2014 is my year of Possibilities .... everything is Possible, truly .... but getting things done when you thought you wanted to get to them.... needs to be done now with a little more creative maneuvering. 
I'll get there.  I'll get back to blogging a bit more too .... I'm keeping perspective and realizing I can only do 'so much' well and every day I look for new opportunities to SHINE!!
Come back and visit me again!!

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

You Don't Want to Shelf This One

Like I've said on my blog many times before, EVERYBODY has a story ... it's a matter of how much time we have to listen to it. Sometimes we learn some interesting lessons.  Often times we feel blessed that we don't have to live through through their LIFE'S situations. And at other times, these stories can be quite entertaining.

I'd like to think that as I've gotten older, I've become more patient and understanding in realizing that some people just like to talk.

As a young mom, I certainly was absorbed and involved in my family's lives.  Unless they were a close friend or member of my extended family, it was hard to 'hear' anything that others were saying, because I was busy.

When I took on my part-time job almost 6 months ago .... first of all I didn't think I'd last 6 months and secondly .... I didn't know I would hear so many stories.

To protect the innocent, I will not use their actual names.  And I guess that I'm lucky when I say... I don't have that many people who follow my blog, so if there is some clause that I signed when I started my job that I'm not 'allowed' to blog about my day to day activity... I don't think anyone would find out.

Insert fun picture: to break up the text and to give your eyes a rest.
There are all types of people who frequent where I work.  Most of you know where that is ... but all I'll say here, is that it is a place you buy used things! :0)
Over the past 6 months ... we have become familiar with the regulars who come in pretty much every day.  Sometimes even twice a day. And of course by now, we (the cashiers) are on a first name basis with some of those Tom, Dick and Harrys. We have found out why they buy what they do.  We find out where they might go with that item and we find out that for some, it is a hobby to sell on the side, and for others.... shopping and re-selling is their way of making a living. And some are buying because they discovered they can find some really cool things at great prices.
Our regulars are both women and men.  And each of them have a speciality that they are knowledgeable about.  A few know a thing or two about electronics.... from stereo speakers to old vinyl record albums.  Another strictly purchases toys. One looks for items in original packages that have never been opened.  One regular buys a little bit of everything, from name brand clothing to character glassware that was given away as promotional items at the gas station in the 70s. And they tell us they sell items on EBay, Craig's List and at Flea Markets.
It is all very interesting!
We are starting to look for items they might like and sort of hold them back until they stop by!  Ssssshhhhh.....

I'll end this post with a very heart warming customer story.  I can recall it vividly.  Last Friday an older gentleman was looking in our electronic department at a portable piano.  In his broken English he wanted to know if it would plug in.  For some reason it came with no electrical cord and no backing on the battery slot.  He couldn't quite understand what I was saying.  But he said thank you and moved on.
As I put 'new' items on the dvd/cd/cassette/8 track/album shelf, he came up to me again and asked if we had any other instruments.  He had played the accordion, maybe we had an accordion for him.  Other than kid 'toy' instruments I knew of nothing else available that day.  He nodded.  Then he told me that he liked music. And wanted to know how much the cassette tapes cost. I told him .49c and he nodded again.  He told me again that he had played the accordion.  I smiled.  He said he played when he was in the concentration camp and proceeded to pull up the sweater on his arm.  He raised it as high as he could to show me the I.D. tattoo on his bicep.  He was in a Jewish concentration camp in Poland.  He was here today because he played the accordion for the soldiers, he was a musician.
I didn't know what to say. 
He was telling me quite a story.
He then asked me how old I thought he was. I don't wish to insult, but I don't know if age for him was a milestone or a heartache.  So I guessed 84.  He laughed and with his strong Polish accent he said 90!  And he smiled.  Then he asked how old I was.... I said 50.  He smiled.  Shook his head and said 35.  I laughed.

He talked to me a bit more.  I told him that I had to get back to work.  And he smiled and 'wished that God be within me!'
Well to say the least, his story touched me. 
Over the weekend, I had the opportunity to tell a few people that I got 'hit on' at work.  Nobody expected it to be a 90 year old gentleman.  His story touched me because recently in my book club we read a Unbroken, a book about American Prisoners in Japanese POW camps (you will see trailers for the movie directed by Angelina Jolie, by the end of the year.)  And I've also read other books about different concentration camps and about families that hid Jewish families during WWII.  Not that by any means did I understand what he may have gone through ... but I knew of what he may have endured during that time in his life.
Not so surprisingly, he came back in today. 
He smiled when he saw me.  I just had to ask him what his name was so that I could address him properly... I said what should I call you "Mister....?"  He shook his head and said no, you don't need to call me Mister.... I said that you have earned it!  I will from now on call him Mr. Todd. He pulled my hand and kissed it.  He asked if I would look out for a translation from Polish to English book for him.
I said I would.
The people that I meet....now that I have a bit of extra time to hear their story!
This is one of the ways that I can SHINE in the corner of my world.


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