Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Craft Barn Challenge #10 Passion and Music

Here is my piece for The Craft Barn's Quotes and Lyrics challenge using the words passion or music. 
I started out by randomly stamping an almost dry (even though it was new!) mini stamp pad onto an ATC blank.  Next, I used a stamp of music bars.  Why I didn't think pink and purple inks were going to be screaming loud, I do not know; but I managed to fix that by brushing on a light coat of white gesso.  The stamp fills in a word of the quote and I edged it with some shiny jewels (thanks Valerie!) and a music note die cut.

Here you can see the jewel trim a little better.  I'm off to visit everyone now!

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

T Stands For Tuesday-This one's for Bleubeard

Hi everyone! My T(ea) post today is dedicated to Bleubeard. It is not meant as a "shopping" post but just to showcase some really cute cat related tea items I have come across on the web.  Of course, I have added links to give credit to those I "borrowed" the photos from, and of course, I am linking up with Bleubeard and Elizabeth for T on Tuesday! So let the eye candy begin!
Here is a cute tutorial from The Sunday Girl for creating your own kitty inspired art on a porcelain tea cup.
Animal World has a lot of different styles of cat mugs, but this one is my favorite.  First, because it is purple.  Second, you could sort of warn your family or friends what kind of day it is!
Everyone needs a cute tea pot! I found Chester on Amazon.

Here is a cute "tea for one" set found here.
For those who like leaf tea...I even came across a cat tea infuser.  Don't worry, no cats will be harmed--he sits on the edge of your cup holding the fishy tea ball's chain.
Lastly, here are some cat tea bags....yes, for cats....filled with organic catnip!

Have a great T day and thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Longest post about the longest day ever!

It is no secret....I don't like to drive in (Manhattan) New York City.Twice a year is about all I can manage; once to move our daughter into her college dorm, and once to move her out again. The move out occurred last Saturday. And it was every bit of what I expected...horrendous! Due to some commitments, this was the last and only day she could move out.  Unfortunately, it was also the first weekend the 9/11 museum (which is a mere few blocks away from her) was open. So more traffic, congestion, and people.

We got an early start, and the drive there was relative uneventful despite the small bridge being made smaller by reducing all lanes of traffic to one for bridge work.  On a Saturday? Commendable. Between GPS and our smartphone (yes, we finally got a smartphone and moved into this century!) and the mapping out we previously did, we thought we were all set when we saw the exit marked with the street that was going to take us to her general area. A few blocks down we saw a parking spot, grabbed it and decided to walk the rest of the way.  On a Saturday, you have to take a spot when you see them.  Turns out, we had a 1/2 hour plus walk!  We later figured the highway exit sign was a bit misleading.  You could get there from that exit, but had to drive a few more miles.

On the walk there our daughter calls and says now the (one-way) street right in front of the dorm has been closed off by the electric company because they are doing work underground 1/2 a block up.  Fast forward: we get there, get her stuff all packed up and we are back down on the street pondering what to do.  After a polite conversation with the electric worker, he tells us to move the barrier at the end of the street, drive in, put the barrier back up, load, back down the street and repeat the barrier process in reverse to get out again.  Ok? While my DH and I make the long trip back to the car, our daughter waits on the street with her belongings.

On the way back to the car, DH (who knows the streets in this area well) figures it won't be bad and we can just drive straight up the road we are parked on, make a turn or two and do the above.  That would have worked IF the street we were parked on was not now closed a few streets up for a street fair. REALLY?! Alright, so a small detour of streets and we are headed back to her.  Cue the next phone call....there is now a fire truck blocking the road right inside the barrier we are supposed to move and drive thru.  So now we figure we should just find a spot within a reasonable walking distance and just hand carry her stuff in shifts. 

After driving around with no exaggeration for an hour or more with an ever widening circle, and coming to the realization that we were not going to find a spot, we get another phone call saying he fire truck has now moved and we start heading over to execute the first plan.
If you do not know Manhattan, in this area, the streets are very narrow with cars often double parked to navigate through, so all this "local" driving in a minivan was stressful to say the least.

I got back to the area, honked to move some pedestrians out of the way, jumped out of the car, moved the barrier, and got back in the car to drive through.  All of a sudden a car comes racing down the street towards me, going the wrong way, but wants to get out through the barrier.  I now have to back up, into traffic, fighting people crossing the street behind me.  I finally get thru the barrier and a million cars are trying to come in after me...Yeah, I was going to get out of my car again and replace the barrier.  Sorry, you can't come thru?!  At this point I was so frazzled, drove up the street and stopped on a corner of an alley that is usually closed.  I pulled up on the curb (at the request of a nice policewoman who stopped traffic for me) literally threw the stuff in the car, backed out and was on the way to a nice meal in

Little Italy...a few crowded blocks away thru Chinatown.  On the way there I saw a space, grabbed it, checked the sign twice, read it to my DH who confirmed, put my credit card in the machine, got the ticket and displayed it on the dashboard.  Lunch was at an Italian restaurant that we love and have been to before, and we even celebrated by getting some pastry to take home. 

Walking back to the car, we were all, especially me, more relaxed, well-fed and ready to make the drive home until we see on the windshield....a ticket! Signs are very ambiguous and it turns out we were not in a "legal" spot--to the tune of $115 plus the $9 already paid for the spot.

If you managed to read all the way through this, thanks! Can you see why I do not like to drive to NYC?  And yes, I really, really love our daughter, but I am glad that she only has one more year of Graduate School to go!

Have a happy creative weekend everyone! 

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

T Stands for Tuesday Tea Cup Edition

Hi everyone! I had so much fun last week researching the teapot post that I decided to do it again...only this time on tea cups!  I'm linking to Elizabeth and Bleubeard's T Stands for Tuesday!

World's largest cup of tea: The Guinness Book of World Records credits this to Sri Lanka (formerly known as Ceylon) which is also one of the world's leading producers of tea.

A mixture of 1000 gallons of water, 141 pounds of tea, 353 pounds of sugar, and 1,929 pounds of malted milk power were mixed and pumped into this giant red mug.  It holds the equivalent of 32,000 cups of tea!
World's smallest teacup: This 22k gold tea cup measures just 6 mm which is roughly a quarter of an inch.  It was created to commemorate the Queen of England's Diamond Jubilee and is valued at 137 pounds, about $230 dollars. 

When and why did the tea cup get a handle?  Drinking tea originated in China which they drank out of round, decorated tea bowls.  The English followed this custom until the mid 1700's when they added a handle to prevent ladies from burning their fingers.

One final random bit....
An English tea company holds the record for the largest tea bag--capable of brewing 50,000 cups of tea!  It took 3 people 3 hours to fill the bag which measures 2.4m x 2.4m, approximately 8 feet square! It weighs 120 kg or approximately 264 pounds---Now that's a cup of tea!

Happy T day everyone, and thanks for your visit and kind comments!

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

T Stands For Tuesday-Teapot Superlatives

Hi everyone, especially those joining up with Elizabeth for T Stands for Tuesday.  Today I thought it might be fun to do some teapot superlatives. Here are a few to wet your appetite:

 The largest teapot in the US started out as a giant barrel for the Hires Root Beer Company and measures 14 feet in diameter & 14 feet high.  It was made in 1938 by William Devon who placed it in front of his pottery story and ran a souvenir shop and snack stand inside. Read about it's interesting history here.

The largest teapot collection is owned by an LA couple, Sonny & Gloria Kamm, who have been collecting for over 35 years.  Their collection numbers over 17,000 items and has its own Foundation to organize and preserve it.  Read about the Kamm Teapot Foundation.

The Most expensive teapot ever sold is actually a pair of melon teapots that sold at auction in 20ll for 2.8 million dollars. They look like little pumpkins. Read more here.

The oldest known teapot was made in China (no surprise there) in 1533. Read more here.

And finally, one more....
The world's smallest teapot is the size if a man's fingernail.  More info here.

Well I'll leave it here as this list could go on for several weeks.  One thing I found while researching this post was that there are always several claims to the biggest, smallest, oldest, best, etc.  Man's search for fame?  Anyway, I picked what I considered to be the most credible info.  Happy T Day and happy reading.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Craft Barn Challenge #9 Unique & Fame

I'm back again with another art card for the 9th challenge at The Craft Barn's Quotes & Lyrics challenge. This time the word prompts were unique and/or fame. I chose a quote from Margaret Mead, an American Cultural Anthropologist.
"Always remember that you are absolutely unique. Just like everyone else." I created a template for the background flowers so they would all be the same and then varied their colors so they would all be different.  I finally got to use my new crop-a-dile to add the eyelet in the center of the flower shape with the quote.  Although you can't tell from this angle, the quote is raised off the background with foam discs.The background was done with micron pen and colored with Spectrum Noir alcohol markers.

Now, if you are wondering what happened to entry #8 which was to use Knowledge and/or hurt, here it is.  For any who don't regularly follow my blog, I had cut my finger (which required 5 stitches) the day after challenge 8 came out and was unable to do anything crafty. Still, inspiration struck, and I found this quote by Robert Schuller, a televangelist.
This art card was done with watercolor and micron pen and features a real band-aid!

Thanks for stopping by and have a happy, creative weekend!

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Three T's on Tuesday

Hi Everyone! First I want to say a sincere thank you to everyone who stopped by and left such nice comments about my finger.  Who could have thought such a little finger could cause me so much trouble, but I guess when it is on one's dominant hand, you tend to notice it more.  It is now nearly totally healed and hardly hurts, so I could get back to creating a reasonable facsimile of art!  I get so crabby when I'm not creating, LOL!

I'm joining up with Elizabeth and the rest of the Tea Stands for Tuesday gang--stop by and see what all these talented artists are up to.

So what to make? What to make? Since I have done very little in the last couple of weeks, just coming up with a project was enough of a challenge.  Then I thought I'd make a journal page about what I did do:
I had to use rubber gloves to do the background, but boy did I enjoy getting messy again! I covered the page with white gesso and let it dry.  My gesso is getting old & the cap is broken, so it has a lot of hard dried bits that are hard to get rid of so I just left them.  Texture is good.  Next I scribbled on some watercolor pencils and wiped them around with a baby wipe.  I am sure a lot of you already know this technique, but I adapted it from Pringle Hill Studio's technique. Another thing I did during this time was watch A LOT of You Tube videos!
I had fun making this "hostage style" lettering and using some washi tape that I bought in a local $1 store.  I had plenty of "Time" on my hands, drank many cups of "Tea", and this one was particularly delicious after dinner--no need for dessert! And,
read a lot! I'm on book 3 in the boxed set of 5 books on The Games of Thrones HBO series.  I'm trying to catch up before I start watching this latest season. (Also trying not to read any spoilers in the meantime!)

Thanks for stopping by today and I hope your Tuesday is a beautiful one!