Thursday, May 30, 2013

13 random things on Thursday

1. My sister had her ultrasound today - have to keep it to myself for now but I'll give ya two guesses: Pink or Blue? :)
2. Allergies are kicking my behind today big time. Itchy, runny eyes, stuffy nose and sneezing - ATTRACTIVE I tell ya!
C. I've only killed one ant today - there was about 2304867340293842374853 yesterday - just in my bathroom....I HATE ants. Spiders...eh, ok - the vacuum takes care of those puppies but ants.....YUCK!!
4. Just watched two of my favourite people in an interview:
If you're a GLEE fan, it's great to hear Darren's view on everything from Glen Beck, Kristen Wigg, Amy Adams and of course, Glee...and George, who happens to be my imaginary boyfriend is just sweet to look at and just plain awesome!
5. I need a new phone - mine doesn't hold a charge for even a full day now - it sucks. REally want an iphone.
6. Can't wait to start scrapbooking for my new niece or nephew!!
7. I have to make some cards today.
8. I hate dishes but have to go do them.
9. Really want to try these (found on Pinterest):
banana bread french toast
10. I had a dream last night that I was in bed, and a mouse crawled across me when I was in the bed - it woke me up and really freaked me out!! I am not ashamed to say I turned the light on and left it on the rest of the night - I hate mice too.
11. Thinking of my friend Julie and her family this week - such a hard time for them.
12. I NEED a haircut SO BAD!! I don't think I've ever had my hair this long in my life...
AND...
13. I called Canadian Blood Services today to find out when I could start giving blood since having Mono in March/April. I was told I need to be symptom free for 6 months then I can go and start the process. It's something I've always wanted to do and since my sister has found out she has negative blood, I wanted to find out what my blood type is as well. So come October I'll be able to go and GIVE.

Random though it was, that is my Thursday,

have a great one!!

Friday, May 17, 2013

PAINTING, PAINTING, and more PAINTING

My arm hurts.
Yes, I am a bit of a wimp but I do have tendonitis in my right arm so painting almost every night since last Friday has me reaching for the ice pack when I get home...Home? Where are you painting, you ask?
Good question...
My sister Laura and her fiancé Paul have bought their first house and though it has very good bones, it needed a fair amount of cosmetic work - specifically new floors and PAINT. Every wall had been painted white by the sellers so L &P picked out (well, I think Laura picked out the colours) some paint colours for the kitchen, living room, hall, and main floor bathroom. More to be chosen soon.

The night they got the keys, the carpet and underlay went flying out the door - literally. Nasty stuff that old carpet. I also got the new hardware on the kitchen cupboards - what a difference some new handles make to existing doors.

As soon as everything was cleaned up in the living room, we painted.

Living room before:





Living room during:




And Living room today with new paint and new hardwood floors:



I can't wait for the new white trim and baseboard to go on and furniture to be in - it looks 100% better already. They do have to have a window replaced - the one in the above photo - the seal is gone and it has leaked in the past. Easy stuff for the guys Laura knows from working at the 'home improvement store' over the years.

They have had their issues too - as happens with a home that is not brand new - a crack (yes, I said crack) in the foundation downstairs, a small leak around a vent in the roof and a small leak on the right side of the sink in the kitchen. All of which can easily be fixed. 

We have one coat of paint on the kitchen - that will be finished tomorrow. And all of the doors got a coat of primer tonight and will be finished up tomorrow. Next up will be the trim, master bedroom, then basement, bathrooms and once they find out if it's a boy or a girl...the baby's room :)

I hope the weather is nice enough for me to start digging around in the yard - things need to be trimmed and dug up and moved around. Laura is not in possession of a green thumb so I have been elected for that duty. I love it though and it gives me the opportunity to get dirty again. I miss the garden I had out home. 

I'm so happy for them. It's a lot of work but it's an exciting process too and I'm learning a lot.
 :)
Off to get another ice pack and some kleenex - that Grey's Anatomy season finale was brutal.  :)

Have a happy Friday!!!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Some videos for thought and fun and laughing

Thought I would share some of my favourite videos I've seen floating around the net the last couple of weeks.
First up, Hunter Hayes' I want Crazy video - filmed right HERE in SAINT JOHN, NEW BRUNSWICK!!! He arrived a few days early when he came in April to open for Carrie Underwood (AWESOME concert for sure!!)



Next:
In response to Abercrombie & Fitch CEO Mike Jeffries not wanting "not so cool" kids or women who wear size large to wear his company's clothes, Greg Karber has come up with a funny and creative way to readjust the Abercrombie & Fitch brand.


Monday, May 13, 2013

A lot new since I last blogged...

I really want to blog more so I'm just going to try and make it part of my routine and see how things go.
I love writing and this is the best way for me to get my thoughts and feelings about everything down on 'paper'. Plus, it's another avenue for me to display my artwork.
Since I last blogged I began a new job - finally, a graphic design position in an industry I was very familiar with - I began at a sign company October first and though it took about a week for them to have everything set up for me, I loved it instantly. I was working with really great people who knew their jobs and loved them and it was so different from the environment I had just left (a call centre) that it was like coming up for fresh air - I felt like I could breathe again.
There was still a bit of a learning curve - new software, working on a PC, and getting used to working strictly day shifts again...but I loved it.
Meanwhile, Christmas came and went and I decided after the holidays I was finally going to get a kitten. I had been ooh'ing and ahh'ing over the pictures posted by Carma on their Facebook page for months and one night I saw her - my little girl and I knew I had to have her. She hadn't been fixed yet but a few days after I contacted her foster Mom, she had her operation and was told I could pick her up a few days later.
My girl, Ginny:

I got a cold about a week after I brought her home and though she was the most affectionate, funny, uncoordinated, stubborn cat I'd ever had, she bothered my allergies too much to keep her. I was heartbroken and hoped and prayed that my sister would say yes when I asked if she and her finacé would take her for me. They already had a cat as well as a dwarf rabbit so I was prepared for, sorry, it would be too much but they had been over to visit and loved Ginny as much as I did so I was thrilled when they said yes, they would take her for me.
It was strange, not having her run to the door when I came home anymore but I do get to visit her as much as I want and she's happy with her new home and her buddies.

Though I had received the flu shot when I was at the doctor in October, this winter was rough and I just had an overall feeling of blah and then around the first week of March, I became sooooo tired, I literally could not keep my eyes open at work. More than once I know I nodded off sitting in front of my computer. Though I'm not supposed to have caffeine because of my migraines, I started drinking coffee every morning just to get me to lunch time. By the second week of March, I thought I had the flu - I called in sick all that week and tried to make it in the next week but after a couple of hours, I had to go home. All I did was sleep. I had never been so exhausted in my life. I turned to my friends and family on Facebook to help me figure out what the heck was going on and my cousin, Tena (a nurse at the Mayo clinic) told me I should go and get tested for mono.
Mono?? I'm 35 years old...mono is what teenagers get and I am NO teenager. :) I'd never had it in high school, though I remember a few people getting it years ago. But adults don't get that, right??
WRONG.
I first went to the after hours clinic (my family doctor quit her practice in March) and was told I had tonsillitis.  Ok, well I'd had that before - no big deal. I'd also had strep throat and that's what it felt and looked like but I'm not a doctor so off I went to Walmart to get my antibiotics and then went home to bed.
That weekend was Crop & Create in Moncton.
I had paid for it months before and though wasn't sure I should go - there was not an option of getting a refund. Plus, I had told a friend I would share a room with her and drive. As crappy as I felt and looked, I went up anyway and I'm so glad I did. It was an awesome event. Catherine and Jen did an amazing job and I look forward to next year when I won't look like death warmed over.
I came back from Moncton worse than went I went up. I still didn't make it to work most of that week and by Thursday, I finally gave in and went up to St. Joseph's Hospital to have them test me for Mono. After they took blood (twice) and bust the vein in my right arm I went to work mostly to fill them in on what was going on. A half hour later the nurse called to say, Yes, You've got Mono.
GREAT.
Three hours later, they laid me off.
We were slower than cold molasses, I knew that, but they also told me they don't bring new people in unless they plan to keep them and don't lay people off in the slow season. Though, this is exactly what they did. I can't blame them though really, there were days when I didn't have very much to do. I like to be busy. But I was scared to death as well.
How was I going to pay my bills?
Thank God I have good family who support me when I need help - especially my Mom and my sister.
I'd be homeless right now if it wasn't for them.
My Unemployment came in eventually but it's not enough...it never is.
I am looking though for something else, even though I'd love to go back to my old job.
Who knows what is next for me?
I am feeling a lot better now though. My sleep schedule isn't back to where it should be but that takes more time than anything, or so I've been told.
In the mean time...I found out in February that I am FINALLY going to be an auntie!! L and P have to put off the wedding until next May but that's ok. Everything is ready for the most part and this summer, instead of throwing her a bridal shower, I get to give her a baby shower. EXCITED does not even begin to describe how I am feeling about this baby!! By the end of May we will know whether it's a boy or a girl and I can start planning the shower.
In anticipation of their growing family, L & P bought a house and just got the keys last week. Immediately, carpet was ripped out, cabinet hardware was changed and the painting began. There's a lot of work to do over the next few weeks but it's going to look night and day different by the time it's done. I can't wait for the house warming party! :)
Once I started to feel better I felt the pull of my scrapbook room and with a new batch of photos from Costco printed (not that I don't have enough already) I got my mojo back.
Here are a few I've done recently:








Many more to come.
Hope everyone had a wonderful Mother's Day and have a great Monday!!









Friday, September 28, 2012

BLOG YOUR HEART

My friend Stephanie Howell inspires me in so many ways, it would take a very long time to list them all but one thing she does that I am, admittedly envious of is her ability to make time to do the things she loves to do....blogging is one of them.
I love to write and my tendonitis is better so I am taking a page from her very full, busy, wonderful book and doing a blog your heart post:
First, the rules:
1. blog whatever is authentic. whatever is truly on your mind and in your heart.
2. it can be serious, silly, short, long. note:no one said it has to be serious. but it should be authentic.
3. no judging allowed no snarky comments, no making fun, no passive agressive digs.if you are going to read the blogs linked below, don't be mean. nothing here is whining. it's me honestly sharing my feelings. if you feel that it's whining, then you don't have to read. :)
4. feel free to use the graphic above. just make sure to link back to Stephanie
♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥

So here goes:

1. Today I had lunch with my cousin Jenn, which I've never done before today and it was so awesome. We weren't close growing up and though we do chat on Facebook, we haven't made the time to get together before today. 2 1/2 hours later the place we went for brunch was closing so we had to go. :) Can't wait to do it again.

2. Went to my Dad's for supper and finally gave Susan her birthday gift - her bday was back in June and they've been at their trailer all summer. It wasn't much as the funds are low but I scrapbooked and framed a page of her and her sisters with their mother who passed the end of May. I know she loved it.

3. My aforementioned cousin Jenn found some white paper lanterns posted in the online yardsale and I snapped them up for my sister's wedding next summer - SCORE!!!

4. My house is a disaster - I'd be so embarrassed if someone were to come in here now...if you have to pee, you'd better close your eyes first.....NEED TO CLEAN TOMORROW!!

5. My place still smells like the banana bread I made late last night - LOVE that smell.

6. Both nervous and excited to start my new job on Monday - I know I can do it but a small part of me is just hoping and praying that I'm not just good but awesome at it.

7. I need to buy meat. None in the house.

8. Youtube playlists and editing them - not my idea of fun

9. Missing my best friend Kelly, haven't seen her and the boys in months. :(

10. Painted a watercolour map of the world yesterday - based on one of the many Pinterest pins I've had stored away for ages now. SO HAPPY WITH IT!!! Which I can't say all that often.

Bonus: 11. I went to Michaels the other day and bought 5 - 16x20 canvases, paint and gesso and I'm scared to death to begin...hence why I played it safe and did the above mentioned watercolour...

Random, though it may be, that's where I'm at right now.

Have a great weekend!!

Monday, July 16, 2012

CHA Summer 2012

I had the very exciting privilege to attend CHA Summer 2008 in Chicago four years ago - my plan: take every single thing in, meet people and get an idea of what it would be like to exhibit at the CHA Winter Show 2009 the following January. Boy was I in the dark...
I had an absolute blast - finally got to meet and spend time with some great friends I had known online for years but this to me, was a work trip, a reconnaissance mission. The next show would be in Anaheim California, another state I had never been to. And I was super nervous. Though it didn't turn out the way I had hoped, I still loved the show and I'm so glad I did it.

Fast forward to four years later and now I'm just getting back into my 'habit' and loving doing my craft, work and art for myself. I do have a few favourites that are new on the scene in the last few years and there is one or two in particular I would LOVE to do work for but bits and pieces keep popping up on facebook and online that I will have to save my pennies for when the new products start rolling into stores in the coming months...here are just a few:

CARTA BELLA - Echo Park's sister company - I'm in loooove with their romantic, shabby, but pretty style which is normally sooo not me but something about this company is woooing me and drawing me in....two of their releases for CHA:

PARIS GIRL

and All Hallow's Eve

This is the show where you get the thematic collections - Halloween, Christmas, Valentine's day - the biggies - the line that are temporary but fly off the shelves as soon as they are unpacked.

One Company that has always intimidated me is Basic Grey - I don't know why...maybe it's the distressed, shabby chicness of it that I just can't connect with but one thing I have always loved by BG is their xmas lines - for some reason, I just find them so much easier to use and this year's
Aspen Frost is no exception...check it out...



A fav from way back is Studio Calico - they just keep coming out with amazing fun new products that I am yearning to get my hot little hands on:


Yearbook is one of my absolute favourite Collections from any Manufacturer this season - the colours and patterns are inviting and user friendly and there are so many new embellishments and unlimited possibilities waiting to be created with these innovative designs and materials... Mistables....I can see this line of embellishments just getting larger and larger in the coming year - so versatile...

Diecut frames - graphic titles and shapes incorporated into a throwback to the old school polaroid format. 

And oodles of cardstock stickers to give your project that extra little somethin....




And my ALL TIME FAVOURITE - my new love ECHO PARK - so many incredibly delicious collections - I haven't in my 8+ years in this industry, known a company to have so many new releases on in such a short period of time...All equally stimulating, colourful and just plain fabulous designs - my Dream Design Team - would love to be a part of this amazing company....check out the new lines coming to a store near you sooooon!!!
First: Everyday Eclectic:





EP's Halloween 2012 release:


What I love about this collection besides everything?? Well the cardstock tags that are tombstone shaped - genius... And the perfect green to create a palette for one of the spookiest holidays we celebrate....

One of the two new mini themes: Grandma's Kitchen - LOVE IT!! It's so cute and I can see so many home decor items as well as cards and layouts to be made with this stunning collection






And last but certainly not least, EP's new Christmas Collection: Very Merry Christmas...





All coordinates with last years collections and so easy to use - so many great elements - my favourite is the garland of ornaments. Can't wait to make cards and home decor with this line...

So, that's a small start - but really, my top picks so far...will post more as the sneak peeks become available...

Some day I hope to return to our industry's biggest show and meet up with the wonderfully talented, amazing people who contribute and engineer the products we love to use in this awesome hobby...

       HAPPY MONDAY!!

Sunday, June 24, 2012

TIME

Why haven't I made use of this blog in so long?
I don't have kids yet and I can't imagine being able to make the time you need for the responsibilities that others do when they have children. 
I know I probably sleep too much and I do work full time but I know I waste a lot of time that could be spent more productively as well. Stress can get the better of anyone and it's the main reason why I took two years off of doing anything scrapbook related. I've spent alot of time on the couch and know every host on the DIY channel by name.

Even when it was someone's birthday and I 'had' to make a card, it felt like a chore, I wasn't enjoying it.
Depression contributed to that but it was just too overwhelming to think that because I had taken so much time off - and the industry kept on going without me that at times, I thought, I'll never get caught up - I'll never be in 'that' mode again where I was up on everything that was happenin' in the industry - running to Michaels everytime the flyer came out just to find something - anything to use that coupon on.
I have given a lot away, I have sold a lot of my old things but I'm am buying again... just not like I used to and I am doing pieces and layouts just for me. I've found a couple of manufacturer's that I adore and would love to be on a DT for them someday but for now, I'm content with doing things just for me...I didn't for so long and instead of dwelling on how much time I've missed, I'm just going to go forward and keep going and doing what makes me happy and not worry so much about what everyone else is doing.
Why did I start again? Well, I can thank my cousin Julie and her son Caleb for that. She's pregnant with baby number two and Caleb just turned a year old in March. I had made a baby album for Caleb as a shower gift for Julie and when I made it - it was only half full of pages, just waiting for the adorable photos that would soon come. 
One day Julie, who is an esthetician by trade, called me and said, I've got a proposition for you. Curious, I said, oooooh k. I have some pictures I'd like to have made into pages for Caleb's book you made me and in return, I'll give you a free pedicure. Well, she had me at the word pedicure...Julie is amazing at what she does and I am terrible at doing it myself and since I don't always have the extra money to have it done professionally, I jumped at the deal. :) I personally think I'm getting the sweeter end of the deal, I get to play and be creative and get and enjoyable, much needed (you'd agree if you saw my feet at the end of winter lol) service that I just couldn't do myself a tenth as well as she can. 
So, that's how it began...Julie and Pinterest as well - I'd have to give that site some credit as well. If any there was a place for drool induced inspiration, it's Pinterest. It was addicting at first, so much so that I wasn't going near Facebook - gasp!! lol. 
I've accumulated quite a few pins now and mostly dreams and possible projects and food I will never tackle but I have made a few things from there, tried a few tips I found and passed them along and now it's a go to for mojo boosting and sometimes I just dive into the supplies I do have and just play. Not worrying about if someone else will like it. At the end of the day, if I like it (and maybe my cousin, Julie) that's all I need to be concerned with. 
So, here are some of the pages I've done of our boy in the last few months: 










 Julie gets to chose which one of the silly boy layouts she wants and I will keep the other. :)
 This xmas one was for me :)

I have more that were done just for myself I'll post another day...and I won't take two years to do it. :)
((hugs))
xx00
Christine