Friday, March 28, 2014

Making Rage Shine!

Did you know that I was a card maker????

That's a trick question.

Here is a used deck of playing cards that I found in the game drawer.

What is an empty nest paper crafter to do when she starts to purge things that the 'kids' wont be playing with any time soon?
Add a little white acrylic paint and...
.... spread a bit of Sunny Yellow, smudge a bit of Antique Gold, ink a rubber stamped image or two, and mod podge sentiments with a few encouraging words to .... make them into a little 'pick me up'!!!!  That SHINES!!!!!
Everyone has SHINE in them. 
We don't always feel it, or even see it on a gloomy day. 
So, I decided to hand over some of my extra SHINE cards that were all 'decked' out!

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

It's A Mad, Mad, Mad World

Cooper and Tucker are getting in the game!!!

All weekend long we heard whistles blow, fans cheering and clocks ticking down.

It's March Madness baby!!!!

Someone in our house will be winning the $15 pool.  Let's just say that the lady of the house is in the lead, so far with her picks!!!

Monday, March 24, 2014

Week #3 SG

It's time for an update!

Last week was week #3 of my SHINE Girl project.  I was given 3 new tasks from the House of Shine and here is what they were, and what I did!! BE.DO.SHARE

BE. Optimistic

Turn lemons into lemon bars. 

I don't think I've made lemon bars from scratch before, but thank goodness for my friend Betty.  I didn't really have good news to share when leaving this sunny treat out for others, but it was a great pucker up, pick me up on a busy day!

DO. The Great Outdoors
Plant something yellow in your yard.

Those great friends at the House of Shine don't quite get that in some parts of the USA, although it says SPRING on the calendar, some of us still have snow on the ground and high temperatures reaching only a balmy 31 degrees.  So, instead of planting something yellow in my yard, I pulled out my lovely 'fake' daffodils and filled a special planter in my hall to brighten up the front entry way!
SHARE. Sunrise
Set your alarm clock for early one day this week and rise with the sun.  Journal all the colors, words thoughts.... use your ideas to begin a creative project.

With the recent daylight savings time change, a traveling husband, one kid home for college spring break, two confused puppies and a new altered routine .... getting up before the sun was a little bit of a challenge.... but it was spectacular!!!
I love the stillness a new day has. 
Spring is in the air, but nature isn't cooperating just yet.  The birds were chirping and there were arguments sprouting in different trees and bushes around our house.  The frost on the front yard was like a light white blanket.  The air was crisp and I could see my breath. There is still icky snow that has turned into dirty car exhaust ice.... yuck!  I was able to just absorb the sights, the sounds, and the smells.
I will have to Share another sunrise.... when the days start to get warmer. It is something I look forward too!  Maybe I'll have to try and see what a sunrise is like in Texas when I visit in about 10 days.  I'm really excited to see the real House of Shine!

Thursday, March 20, 2014

On the Board

In between all the other stuff... I can't help it.... but I still need to create 'something' every day. 

It just makes me happy.

I'm still making greeting cards and as always ... my cards and paper crafts are FOR SALE!

Most all cards you see are only $3 each. (that includes shipping)

Plus I have more in my stash ... <-- ....or="" a="" amp="" be="" card="" cards="" check="" create="" d="" different="" happy="" i="" of="" out="" p="" personalized="" the="" to="" types="" unique="" whimsical="">
Here are a few recent cards:

 These two are the same, but different.... masculine birthday.

I love the stache!
And here are two more cards that I'm 'highlighting' on the board ....

Welcome in Spring and Feel Better!

Unique cards for the special people in your life!!!!

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

No. 2

A SHINE Girl post....

During week one of the SHINE Girl project my BE. DO.
SHARE part was to make something out of the this months Shineworks item.... a pencil or many....

As a wannabe creative writer and a master crafter, I had to come up with something to combine both of my interests .... so here is what I made!

Fun, fuzzy, and friendly pipe cleaner pencil toppers!

Nothing is more fun than crazy googlie eyes!
What's more fuzzy than a crafty pipe cleaners?
And what's more cute, cuddly and friendly than bunnies and chicks with feathers, wings, ears and fluff ball tails?
I put them in a FuN box of SHINE care package to Sissy, my college Freshman at Mizzou.  And this is what she thought when she saw them.....
I take full credit for creating my own pipe cleaner Easter critters, but give kudos to those who pinned their ideas first on Pinterest.
What's even more fun than bunnies and chicks???? .... is creating cute monsters (like Muppets) with two different size eyes, feathers, horns, wings, noses....
You name it (or create it) !!! 

Anything twisted with a colorful pipe cleaner can brighten someone's day and add a little SHINE!

Monday, March 17, 2014

Happy St. Patrick's Day

May good luck
be your friend
in whatever you do
may trouble be
always a stranger .... our wish for you!
It's POSSIBLE that Cooper has some Irish Setter in him!
And it's POSSIBLE that Tucker can be an Anglicized form of the Irish surname O'Tuachair.
I'm a great believer in luck, and I find the harder I work, the more
I find of it ~ Thomas Jefferson

Friday, March 14, 2014


There are so many little things in the works. 
And nothing is complete.
That frustrates me a bit.
But, it's all POSSIBLE.

I'm still a SHINE girl and I am working both inside and out!
You can read more about my being a SHINE Girl here.
Week #1  I acted on these prompts ...
BE. Grateful
I posted what I was grateful for on sticky notes around my front entryway mirror.
DO. Something Unexpected
I sent some FuN MaiL decorated with yellow markers and doodles.
SHARE. Your ingenuity.
I was asked to make something I can give away that is related to this months SHINEworks project ... a simple #2 pencil. More pictures to come.
It's week #2 and I've been given a few more tasks.  Here's what I've done.
BE. Nostalgic

Connect with someone.  I have put a little twist on this action.  I left out ... you've fallen out of touch with, swap photos.
It's kind of an inside joke ... but the task is...
BE. Nostalgic
What's fun is my friend on the left is BE.  Just BEBElieve. BE-u-tiful. Just BEcause
BE, my friend B-ecky E-llis!!!
We met over 20 years ago when we worked for the same company in Wisconsin.  She was an outside sales rep out of Utah, I was inside sales.
We connected! 
Something clicked! 
In the beginning, we were both newlyweds and then new moms.  Our hand-written letters and cards were as frequent as they could be, comparing trials and tribulations of being woman with different backgrounds, religions and landscapes.  But then when we talked on the phone, we couldn't believe how similar we were, trying to live good, clean, honest lives, raise wonderful productive children and laugh and cry through some of the most unusual stuff.
Handwritten letters changed to type written notes. In between all that we would send treats through snail mail.... trying to find something unusual that encompasses our long friendship.  Then letters changed to emails (some long, some short, some finished, some not) and now we text and even facetime.... sending little videos to each other.
And our hope one day (soon) is that 18 years is a long time not being in the same state, city, room together,  that we can reconnect and just giggle... and go on from there.

Next.... I need to DO. Something Scary..... stay tuned ... in a little over 72 hours I predict that something like that will happen!
And lastly.  Week #2 SHARE. Shine
Inscribe 10 PR Greetings with inspiring messages of hope.

Here is part 1.  Don't be alarmed (RAGE)..... they will turn into SHINE! These are just the playing cards I use to up cycle to....

In twenty years you'll look back at photos of yourself and recall in a way you can't grasp now how much possibility lay before you and how fabulous you really looked.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

We'll Be Watching You

Yes, I admit it!  I give food scraps to the dogs under the table.

I've set myself up. 
After every meal the dogs expect a little sumthin' sumthin'. 
I often have one dog with his head on my lap and the other one keeping vigilant at my feet for any crumb that might wander his way to the floor.
Tucker knows at around 9 or 10pm Jeff will make his lunch for the following day.  He is sound asleep on his pillow in my craft room, upstairs with the TV on.... and once a little bag gets unzipped and the fridge is opened .... he shoots out of the room, down the stairs and gallops to the kitchen to wait for any morsel falling off the counter.
I sometimes grab a Happy Meal on the way home from running errands and have pulled the car into the garage and finished my food in there because I don't want four beady eyes begging for my last crunchy french fry.  My treat!
I feel sorry for people who don't have dogs.  I hear they have to pick up their own food if they drop it on the floor.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Dog Poop HitsThe Fan

Every once in a while I need to write a post that is just for the awe factor ....

Sometimes.... well, most the time.... this little doggie is so darn cute!!!! I can't stand it!
Here Tucker is ... just chillin' out on his dad's lap.
He's going to be 5 years old soon!  All my babies are growing up!
Because I love dogs soooo much.... have I mentioned that before?  I started taking a class in October at a local dog training facility.  I was learning how to be a puppy and basic obedience class instructor.  Every other week I spent 3 hours in the classroom learning about dog behaviors and finding out methods that this facility used to train the owners of new pets.
After 18 hours of classroom work, it was time for us 'students' ....  I think maybe 8 in all (the classes were spilt on two different days, Thursday afternoon which I attended and Saturday mornings), to start working on the training floor. New puppy classes began the first of the year.  However, we had extremely cold weather in January and 2 classes were cancelled because the facility owner didn't want puppies coming out in -5 degree weather.
Although there were a few glitches assisting on the training floor, I instantly knew that I liked helping the new puppy owners training their puppies and dogs proper basic behaviors and manners.
Then something happened. 
The owner of the facility had a possible heart attack (details are sketchy) ... and one day we all (student trainees, trainers and dog owners) got an email that stated she was taking a sabbatical and was closing the facility and selling everything.  Five days later the place closed.
Luckily, (hopefully) it wasn't one of those horror stories that is documented on a news show.  She refunded paid tuition for classes booked in advance.  And us students were given certificates of completion of the training course. We had about 6  more weeks of floor training with the owners and their dogs.
It was quite disappointing.  But we'll see ... she told us when the doctor said she is healthy enough, she is planning on opening a new larger facility in 6 to 8 months.
In the mean time ... stay tuned!  A new POSSIBILITY is in my future!

Friday, March 07, 2014

It's all FuN!

Have you noticed that the sun is beginning to rise earlier and it's going down later?

The long awaited Spring is just around the corner...
cross your fingers,
your eyes, your toes, your legs....
cross everything in hopes this really comes true.

If Winter comes, can Spring be far behind??

Well in our neck of the woods it's going to be very, very interesting what our Spring has in store for us.  I must admit not every winter did we have such extreme cold with wind chills below zero.  And too, this is the 3rd snowiest winter on record in the Chicagoland area.  Everybody is 'over' winter .... bring on Spring!!!

We know that Spring has to come.  Probably in the past we didn't give much thought to it.  As the seasons go we all know what follows next.  But when you have something that is so severe, it's hard to imagine what will come with warmer temperatures?

You can believe with 2 doggies and 8 paws that when all this snow thaws ... I will have paw prints to clean off the hallway tile, and dog shakes to wipe off the walls!

It depends on how quickly it all thaws ... rivers nearby go into flood stage if it rains 3" .... we have about 2 feet of snow on the ground right now ... what surprises does mother nature have on those closer to those tributaries?

The ware and tear of freezing and blowing of heavy snow and ice have encased our house for almost 100 days.  The house is 15 years old.... will the paint be peeling as ice begins to melt and start dripping? What will we find near the foundation?  How have the trees and bushes weathered through it all?

All of those things are POSSIBLE. 
But they are all things I have no control over. 
I can prevent some things from making my home worse, but I can't stop others from occurring.
But I can DO. something that is unexpected.  As part of the fun being the SHINE Girl for March (read more about that here)  and to finish off this first week, I plan on decorating someone's corner of the world yellow.

How lucky for me to have the right tools to make this POSSIBLE.
Be kind whenever POSSIBLE.  it is always POSSIBLE ~ Dalia Lama
It's Friday, and time to
Brighten Someone's Day!!!

Wednesday, March 05, 2014

Dust Puppies

Home is where the dog hair sticks to everything, but the dog.

Vacuuming the house while the dogs are laying around, is like shoveling snow while it's still snowing .. Tucker tip of the day.

Tuesday, March 04, 2014

I Will BE Grateful

Thank goodness there are all kinds of people in the world!

Some, have no problem thinking outside the box ....

... is a metaphor that means to think differently, unconventionally, or from a new perspective. This phrase often refers to novel or creative thinking.

I must admit that I always thought that I thought differently.

I know that I was afraid to 'be' confident in my differences.

I don't want to be soooo different that people avoid me, but I want to be authentic and true to myself.

I look pretty 'normal' don't I????
There is a point and a time in your life that you have to start believing in yourself and believing in the POSSIBILITIES .... a thing that may happen.
I've been working on so many different little projects lately ... I don't want to bore you to death... they are starting to come full circle for me and I am really excited!! 
I'm working on the fact that every day I have to take a moment and pause ...there is something good and there is something to be grateful for.

If you have followed me for any length of time, or you are here at my blog for the first time today (Welcome...... I create whimsical greeting cards..... click on a links on the left side of this page to all kinds of  unique cards :0)  I am a part of the House of Shine.
Too hard to explain in one sentence ...  (according to Claudia the owner/founder) but it's a fun way to bring joy into the lives of others through random acts of kindness and creativity. It's a place to find like minded people who want to be accountable for their actions, those who want keep perspective of the world around us and those who realize the impact of the little things.... and so much more....
For the entire month of March I've been chosen to be their SHINE Girl. My instructions to act have come my way via snail mail on super cute cards. Now I must BE.DO.SHARE and SHINE!
In my 'own' creative way I want to bring even more SHINE to my corner of the world.
Using 'yellow' post-it-notes to list all the things for which I am grateful for is the first task of SHINING inside and out.

I couldn't quite cover it how I wanted to in my corner of the world.... so I decided to use my post-it-notes to frame the mirror in my front hallway.  Every time we go in and out this main door to our house... I am so grateful for many things.  A picture of this helps me to 'reflect'  on those things...
One can never pay in gratitude; one can only pay 'in kind' somewhere else in life.

Express gratitude and gratitude promotes happiness.
What are you grateful for?
Please join me on this adventure!
Share this post! 

Monday, March 03, 2014


When you're surrounded by people who share a passionate commitment around a common purpose, anything is POSSIBLE - Howard Schultz.


My horoscope on Friday when I received my SHINE Girl Box in the mail read:

... But that same world becomes bright, endearing and warm.  All that's missing from your world right now, Aries, is a little bit of light, but it is coming...

What POSSIBILITIES does this box hold?
Each week for the month of March, the House of SHINE will put me to the test and challenge me to SHINE a little bit more in my corner of the world!  Stop back soon to see what they prompt me to do.
Meanwhile.... with the sun shining outside my window and 5" of fresh snow on the ground, Mother Nature tricks us once again here in the midwest to believe what we see, but the temperature is a frigid 4 degrees with the windchill at a steady -9.
I'm always open to the POSSIBILITY that somebody's got a better idea than I have.  It happens with some frequency - William Shatner


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