Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Gold Guns & Girls

An Etsy treasury with one of my Space Girls!
Posted by Red Hot Kitchen.

These are always so fun, but this one really rocks! Hot stuff!

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Happy Father's Day

My dad is a card. Seriously! He sometimes seems to be very serious and quiet but don't let that fool you. My dad is a champion shaggy dog story teller and perfecter of deadpan humor.

At least he thinks he's funny...ask my mom and she may have a different story.

Anyway, I was reminded recently of one of my favorite "dad stories", so I thought I'd share it with you.

Around 1989 or so, I had just recently gotten back to the good ol' US of A from Germany. I was in school, trying to figure out what I wanted to be when I grew up. Dad was working for an electric company and part of his job as plant manager was to go on business trips from time to time. Several times he got to go to Florida for those trips. Dad had taken my mom a couple times, and my little brother. This time around though, they didn't show any desire to go.

I happened to be visiting with my folks when dad said he guessed he should have asked me if I wanted to go before he turned the extra ticket back in. I said something like I would have liked to go or that would have a been fun... A short time later dad excused himself from the room. He came back saying he called and got them to leave the ticket open, and would I like to go? I debated for all of about 5 seconds (I mean, I was in school and all, and had finals coming up, and Florida was a long way away and...who am I kidding? I was stoked to go!)

So I packed my books and research papers and flew off to Clearwater, FL with my dad. While he was in meetings I studied and wrote my term paper.
I knew it was going to be a cool trip because the first thing we got to the hotel the kid who was hauling our bags up to our rooms grabbed the suitcases and said, "Follow me!" and practically started running. We followed along and he suddenly stopped along an outside railing on one of the upper floors of the hotel and pointed to the horizon. Then we saw it: the Space Shuttle was taking off across the bay! We got to see the launch and the first section of the rocket fall away. It was pretty darn cool!

Plus, the hotel had a parrot in the lobby! I'm a sucker for parrots. (Even if they are mean little turds who want to bite my finger off... but I digress.)

So we spent a couple days at Epcot,

Busch Gardens and the Ringling Mansion (wow!)

and took a dinner cruise in the harbor that went past a bunch of rich people's houses (the only one I remember was the one that at that time belonged to Hulk Hogan.) It was pretty neat getting to have my dad all to myself.

My favorite memory however, was at Epcot. See, they have these Renaissance players that wander the park and put on little mini-plays.

We stopped to watch them do a hilarious version of Romeo and Juliet. I remember that when Romeo dies they made him go lay in a chalk outline. The funniest thing, though, was that they picked my dad to be Romeo! My dad!
Little did they know that they were getting in way over their heads by doing so...

So, they feed lines to the audience members they pick to "assist" them and then the "actor" is supposed to repeat them. They were at the part where they say that Romeo spied Juliet across a crowded room and my dad spontaneously bursts into a version of "Some Enchanted Evening!" The crowd cracked up laughing and the players were trying not to laugh and the poor girl trying to wrangle my dad was looking more confused than she probably had ever been.

But it was perfect. And it was totally my dad. And it's one of my favorite dad memories ever.

My dad: who takes neat pictures and sends them to me.

My dad: who catches big fish and does not send them to me. (Thanks, Dad.)

My dad: who makes me laugh and always lets me know he loves me.

I love you, too, Dad.

Friday, June 18, 2010

seaside weddings

Thought I'd share this beautiful Etsy treasury from EatsDessertFirst.
Seaside Weddings

Thursday, June 17, 2010

We have a winner!

So, thanks to random.org, and their random dice roller, #2 commenter is the winner:

which is...
Leslie Hanna of the Crooked Stamper!
Congrats - I'm excited to see what we come up with!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

It's 11 PM - do you know where your blog is?

It's 11pm on Tuesday and, after feeling dopey all day, I'm now suddenly wide awake. So I'm trying to catch up on my blogging, reading and commenting. I apologize to all those who usually see me around the inner webs, but it's been a long, weird week.

First off, I had a test and presentation at work a week ago. A what? At 911? Yah, well I signed up, along with several co-workers, for a series of leadership classes. We have attended a class once a month since last September. I thought it would be a nice break once a month from answering phones and talking to crazy, pissed off people. Which it was.
The classes were taught by De Hicks, who has done other team building type classes for us over the last few years. Don't let the suit fool you, he is also this guy, and he is wicked hilarious and the classes are always fun. Except...

Except we were told at the last official class that we were going to have a test and a presentation at the final meeting.

I hate "presentations". You would think that someone who was in choir and drama classes in school, did musical theater in Germany, was in a Celtic band that played all over town, and is a blogger all over the internet would not be shy in front of people she has worked with for over 10 years...
but you would be wrong! I can pretend to be someone else and and spout 3 pages of monologue, sing, dance and whatever, but for some reason standing up and talking in front of a group makes me so nervous I almost stop breathing.

So I went with the familiar and did a presentation on why Dorothy Gale was a "leader". I used my artwork for props. (Remember these gals?)

Nervous or not, I guess it was okay. I stuttered my way through it and only lost my place, oh, a half-dozen times. I even made a pair of ruby slippers, although I bought the shoes at a local thrift store and didn't try them on first (hello, I don't keep a can of Lysol in my purse) and they are wa-a-ay too big (Hey, Value Village: FYI - a UK7 is not the same as a US7..!) I can't actually wear them, so I am bummed. I may have to make another pair....

Anyway, ruby slippers or not, I was so nervous the night before, I made a joke about trying to figure out some way to "hurt" myself so I had an excuse not to go to work.
(FYI: Tempting Fate? Not. A. Good. Idea.)
Two hours later I tripped going down the basement stairs. I managed not to do a face plant on the basement floor, but instead caught myself on the banister. (Ta da!)
Of course, I caught myself with my right hand. Which is my writing hand. Which means it is my drawing hand. Which means I did not break anything, but I did manage to do some damage to the tendons in my wrist. Which means I have not been writing or drawing or typing (much). I went to work and it was ok for a couple days; then it wasn't. I have been in a brace since Friday and tomorrow I actually have to go in for physical therapy. But like I always say, a day of painful physical therapy is better than a good day at work! (No, seriously, I say that all the time. Just ask Secret Agent Man!) And it also means, that although I type something like 82 words a minute, it has taken me almost two hours to type all this out.

Drawing is also slow, but I am working a little at a time. Hopefully I will have something new to post soon.
And Thursday I will be picking a winner for my contest. If you haven't entered yet, and would like to, you still have time to leave a comment on my Moo post! See ya Thursday!


Update: Three weeks of brace and physical therapy! (At least.) Ugh.

Thursday, June 10, 2010


Not this kind of moo.

This kind!

If you haven't ever seen a Moo Card, go check out their site.

I have been using their mini cards for a couple years now. I love them. (They also do regular sized cards as well as postcards and greeting cards.) They are expecially great for artists and photographers because you can use your own art or pictures. Or, if you are not feeling particularly creative you can pick from their list of designers. They are also extremely affordable - $19.99 for a 100 pack of mini's, or $21.99 for 50 regular sized cards.

Even if you don't run a business of your own, they are fun cards to have as "calling cards"; you can include your name, phone number, Facebook page, Twitter handle, blog address or whatever!

I just got a new order in the mail, and this time around included some of my jewelry pictures. Here's a few:

I really like the mini cards because there is still room enough for great images and all your info, but they are smaller and kind of unusual for a business card, which I think helps people remember them.

There are also several sellers on Etsy that make great little card holders, too. I have one from DearSukie, but there are several others like LMCreation and oskarmycat to name a few.

Now for the important part:
If you are interested in getting some Moo cards of your very own, here's a code for 15% off your first order!

Now, for the REALLY important part:

Everyone who follows me and then leaves me a comment will be entered for a random drawing (well, okay, "drawing" meaning I'll use the online random generator to pick a number) for a free card design by me!
That means I will design one image for you to use on the front of a Moo card. Yea! If you win I will email you and we will work out a design of your choice.

Enter today! I will pick a winner one week from today - so Thursday, June 17th!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Local Beautification Project Complete After Seven Years

That sounds nice and official, doesn't it?

See, we have lived in our house for seven years now and have never really done anything with our front yard other than let the HOA people plant a tree in it.

We have talked about putting in a flower bed several times but just never got around to it. It didn't really bother me much, but Secret Agent Man hated our boring front yard. So this year we finally bit the proverbial bullet and got it done.

We started by digging out the area we thought we wanted to put it - right in front of our porch.

This was easier said then done (although, what isn't, right?) The grass had seven long years to root, plus the ground is mostly clay instead of dirt. Fun fun fun!

We had a pallet of landscaping bricks dropped off in front of the house and started hauling them over one at a time to place around out dug out area. We leveled and dug, leveled and dug. Then we discovered we were going to have to dig out the end more because, as you can see, there is a wee bit of a slant. We stopped where we were and started in again the next day because, frankly, I was tired of playing in the dirt.
But after much trial and error we finally figured it out.

(Secret Agent Man maintaining his secret identity)

I was so proud when we got that done, and it actually looks half-way professional! Maybe we should quit our jobs and become landscapers?
Or not.

Anyway, we had to wait a couple days after that because it rained and rained and rained... And just when we thought we were going to have to build an ark next, it stopped for a couple hours, so we ran to a local nursery and bought a bunch of plants. Of course it rained all the rest of the day, but the next day we were able to get out and plant stuff.

All in all, I think it turned out quite nice. I'm sure we overcrowded the bed, but so what? We can deal with it as it spreads. What a project though! I have new respect for people who do this stuff on a daily basis.

Next up - the light post area at the curb! Yee haw!

So, what have you all been up to?

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Hokey Pokey Dots

Another lovely seller at Etsy, Rebecca of Knee Deep Originals, picked my little Polka Dots & Moonbeams girls for her treasury of all things polka dotted-Hokey Pokey Dots. Great treasury - go check it out!

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

He Doesn't Slither...

He Swings and Slides!
(I wonder if he does the Electric Boogaloo?!)

For Illustration Friday - theme: Slither