31 December 2010

Happy New Year's eve!! I hope you all have had a wonderful holiday season. I've had a great vacation up here in North Carolina, and will be heading home tomorrow for work and crafties, so I'll talk to ya'll soon!! Stay safe tonight!

23 December 2010

Art With Heart, Cycle 3 VOTE NOW! #16!!! Viewer's Choice

It's that time again!!!!  What time, you ask?  Time for the Art with Heart Cycle 3 Viewer's Choice contest!!!

Not too long ago, ya'll helped me win the Cycle 2 Viewer's Choice Contest.  Let's see if we can do it again!!!!

My piece is Number 16, and it's a complete set: necklace, earrings, and bracelet.  Here's some pics:

Falling Leaves

A not quite as good pic, from a different angle...

I had a blast making this, and the colours are just so me...  I love them.  Here's a close-up of the bracelet:

An embellished spiral rope...

And the earrings:

Simple was definitely the way to go with these....

I love the spiral rope pattern.  It's so easy to embellish, and so much fun to play with (and easy to do, as well!)

I hope you'll go vote!  I'd appreciate it an awful lot!

17 December 2010

School is out...

And not a moment too soon!  I actually managed to finish all the grading about 3 hours ago, which must be some sort of record for me.  But finally!  It's done!  I have a whole month of blissful free days ahead of me!  No more slightly neurotic, occasionally forgetful, but still wonderful students!  They're all off relaxing (I hope...) YAY!!!!

Of course, for the next week, I'll be frantically making Christmas gifts (starting with the cards I need to go finish up here shortly.  I still have 100 passes through the Sizzix to go.  Joy....)  I have ornaments to make, jewelry to string, wreaths to design, and a couple of gift cards to buy (so of course, I'm going to have to make holders for those!)

I also have myriad ideas floating around in my head of things I want to try... Thankfully I've got my art journal and while I can't sketch to save my life, I'm pretty good at writing descriptions... lol! I really want to work on this bracelet idea I have using weaving and earring forms... we'll see how it works out...

Right now, I'm either off to sleepy-time land, or off to finish the die-cutting... not sure which.  Either way, stay tuned for pics of projects coming, since I'm out of school and have some time to play again!

14 December 2010

Adventures in really really old car ownership....

Okay, so it's not really, really old, but it is 15 years old... See, I drive (sometimes) a 1995 Ford Explorer.  It was originally a work truck for my Dad's old company, so it had a lot of miles on it when I got it 10 years ago.  Since then, I've driven it daily to work and what not, and usually at least twice a week to Tampa (about a 20 mile trip, one-way) so I've put a lot more miles on it...  Poor George (yes, my truck's name is George... and she's a girl...) is, understandably so, getting tired...

George, in all her dirty glory
So, the last three weeks have not been at all fun in the realm of car stuffs... See, originally, George went to see Bob (our mechanic.  He rocks) about just basic "I'm an old truck stuff..."  There were a few things leaking, the hood wouldn't open (something about struts.... no idea...)and I had absolutely no interior lights.  Not good when you teach night classes and leave campus at 10-ish several times a week.  So that was Thanksgiving week.  Mom and dad were on vacation, so there was no problem with me driving the Grandpa-mobile (Ford F-250.  Generic.  No electric nothin'...  and BIG!!) The Grandpa-mobile is my dad's truck, so named by my brother a few years ago when his (mighta been the hummer at the time) vehicle was in the shop... Now don't get me wrong.  I am very happy to have the Grandpa-mobile to drive.  But as I might've mentioned.. It's BIG.  Very BIG.  I am not used to the BIGness that is its BIG.  But I deal, you know?

The Sunday after Thanksgiving rolls around, Mom and Dad are home from the mountains, so Dad and I go pick up George.  All is well in my world, except George's doctor bill was more than I expected. But I have the bestest parent's in the whole wide world, and can owe them.  I have my truck, Dad has his truck (he really likes his truck) and everyone's ready for work the next day.  And the next day was great.  It was Tuesday that wasn't....  Tuesday, November 30th...  Not a happy car day... George decided it would be fun to not stay started....  Joy.  Thank goodness I tried to start her up 3 hours before class (so much for the errands I was going to run, though...) Called the mechanic, called Dad, get a pickup before class starts, make it to class with moments to spare (good thing I'm the prof and they need me...) and called AAA the next morning.  Tow truck guy shows up... George starts no problem.  Bad, bad George...  Sent her to the mechanic anyway, because I am NOT getting stuck in Tampa at 10 o'clock at night...

The next Saturday rolls around, and I get a call from Mom.  Dad wants his truck back, and my truck is ready.  WOO-HOO!!!!!!  So off we trundle to get the vehicular-being that is George.  She starts... She stays started.. YES! We're in business!!
Yeah, not so much... 15 minutes later, waiting to turn left onto Park Boulevard, George quietly slips back into not-working-land....  Somehow, I managed to get her started and into gear long enough to get into the Dunkin Donuts parking lot during the fortuitous break in traffic... Of course, that's all I managed.  Into the parking lot.  Not a space, just the lot... But a very nice man helped me get her into a space and out of the way.  Yay for the very nice man!

Called Dad (poor Dad had literally just finished filling up Grandpa when I called... yay for me! No need to get gas!) Called AAA... Bob, here we come!  Yay.  really...

Oddly, although it was a Saturday, Bob was at the shop!  So the nice tow truck driver unloaded George, Bob started her up (traitorous truck) and took her for a little spin while Dad and I waited...  She was fine, until (drumroll, please) right before Bob got back to us.  Then, she stalled!!!!!  WOO-HOOOO!!!!  I know, right? Being excited when your vehicle screws up?  But you see, she never acts up for Bob.  She loves Bob.  And she finally did it, so Bob could see what she did!  Yay!!!

George's pretty profile...
 That was a week ago Saturday. Apparently, Bob kept finding things wrong, and Dad kept telling him to fix them.  I don't even want to know how much money I owe my parents... But I am so glad I have them--they are really the best parents in the whole world...

So as of yesterday, George is here at home.  Apparently, she has a practically brand new engine (or at least a whole bunch of new parts).  I did (obviously) manage to make it all the way home. Now we have to see how she acts today.  I need her to last for another year or so.  I'm working on getting a full time job (either in a high school, or, maybe, at SPC.  There's another position open, and I'm applying, so we'll see.  But I'm also definitely pursuing the high school angle.  I need a job... you know?)

Wish me luck with my finicky truck!

The Hive 12 Days of Christmas!

It's Day 9 of the Hive 12 Days of Christmas Giveaway, and today, you could win my Holly Jolly bracelet!  Yay!!!

You could also win some absolutely adorable Snow Girl ornaments from Marie Patterson, or a hand crocheted ring from Corinna Cambanes (so pretty!)  You can check out all the details here

But, if you're not a Hive member yet, you'll need to sign up before you can register to win! (it's okay, it's free!  and a wonderful community!)

Come play with us!

26 November 2010

A Spectacular Online Sale!

Don't forget, through November 30th, Stampin' Up! is having an absolutely spectacular Online Spectacular!

What kind of deals will you see?  Check it out:

  • 50% off select products, including My Digital Studio and the new designer fabrics!
  • 40% off some nifty bundles (be sure to use the item numbers provided in the offer), selected Sizzix BigShot dies, and Décor Elements products
  • 30% off Bundles and Embellishments
  • 20%, 30%, and 40% off selected My Digital Downloads
  • Free shipping on orders of $150 or more.
Shop Online now to secure these great deals!

    22 November 2010

    So I finally did it!!!

    As of last week, I am officially a Stampin' Up! Independent Demonstrator!  I'm so excited!

    And, the best part, no sooner did I sign my agreement, than Stampin' Up! came out with a really nice sale! The Online Spectacular, with 20-50% percent off select items, including My Digital Studio!  I may have to get that!  You can see all the great deals here.

    So, I still haven't received my Starter Kit, and I'm eagerly awaiting it, because I'm ready to play with my new stuff and plan some great projects for workshops.  It should be here soon, though!

    Feel free to take a look at the great deals, and let me know if I can help!

    11 November 2010

    Wowzers!!! What a long time it's been!!!

    ...since I was able to blog!  Oh my!  So, here's the story.  Ya see, I actually had several things I wanted to blog about 3 or 4 weeks ago, but real work interfered.  Had lots and lots of essays to grade.  And then, right about when I finally had the time to start writing some of those things down, my poor lil' Macbook's hard drive took a header. I was computer-less for a week and a half.  That was not a fun week and a half. See, I'm a teacher.  A college English professor.  And I teach online classes.  When I don't have a computer, that's really hard to do.

    Anywhoo.... my baby is fixed, although I lost a lot of the pictures I was planning to use in some blog posts. But, some of those I can retake, and some I can ask a few friends to take for me.  So, I should be able to replace the ones I need to still document.  So, it could have been worse.  In fact, the only reason I didn't lose everything is because I have a very awesome Mac-guru who backed up my computer last year (yes, I know, I should do that myself regularly... trust me, I will now...) So really, I only lost the recent-ish stuff...

    So, since I've been computer-less, I really kinda dropped off the face of the interwebz.  I've been lurking in Facebook on my phone, and have almost totally disappeared from the Hive (I've missed you, Hive friends!) But, I did find a small glimmer of nifty-ness in being computer-less--I had more time to be crafty!  I've been playing with my new Sizzix Big Shot. I got it through Stampin' Up!, so I can use it for parties when I become a demonstrator next year (yup! I'm 99.9% sure I'm gonna do it!!) At the moment, I have a Sizzlits die, an Embosslits die, and an Embossing folder.  I'm looking forward to getting more dies and having more fun.

    I also finished a bracelet order (and made a cute little bag to deliver them in! LOL!) and started another, and have some ideas for a few other jewelry pieces.  And I started making ornaments.  Paper and Mod Podge, and embellishments.  I'll be doing a blog post on those, definitely.

    So that's the latest news, and I've very much enjoyed writing this little post.  I'd had no idea how much I'd come to depend on my writing as a stress reliever, and I'm very happy to have my computer all fixed and back home.  Talk to you soon!

    20 October 2010

    Stuff, stuff, stuff....

    Lotsa stuff has been going on here lately... some of it jewelry-ish in nature, some of it teachery in nature... But, the really fun stuff has been pure crafty. 

    Here's a piece I'm especially fond of. It has no name, per se, so I'm just calling it "really cool thing hanging on my door"...   Here it is:

    Cool, huh?  See, it's these really massively huge-ish leaves that I stole from my mom (love you, mom! Okay, really, I saw them hanging in her closet, and she gave them to me...)  Here's a close-up of one:

    There were six, but I ended up only needing five (so now I have an extra, and I'm not sure what to do with it.  I'll figure something out...) So I arranged them in a big circle and wove the stems behind the pretty bits, and then hot glued it all down to keep it together.  Then, I wasn't sure what to do with the center.  But, my friend Amy was on hand, and started playing with the big bunch of fall flowers I had sitting on the table. So, after she got done, it looked like this:
    Pretty, huh?!?  Amy's pretty darned crafty when she wants to be (which isn't nearly often enough, in my opinion...)

    12 October 2010

    Artfire Collections and the People who curate them ROCK!!!

    I was included in another collection on Artfire!

    Check out the awesome company I'm keeping! YAY!!!!

    10 October 2010

    Jewelry weekend

    I had a good weekend!  And now I should be reading essays, but I'm not feeling it, so I'll do them later.  Instead, I want to blog about the fun stuff I made!  :D

    So, I started last week playing with the resin beads I won as part of the Art with Heart Viewer's Choice contest (thanks again, everyone who voted!)  I absolutely love these beads, and it's especially cool, because I doubt I would ever have bought them for myself.  Here they are:
    Resin Beads from Happy Mango Beads
    So, I've been pondering these beads for awhile now, and the very cool Softflex: Trios™ Color Wire Set I received as well, in the Harmony colors (I'm so going to have to get some more of this stuff.  It's great!!)

    Finally, I decided it would be fun to make myself a set.  So I did.  Here's all 3 pieces:
    Resin Jewelry set
      I absolutely love the earrings and bracelet:
    They look like little purses! (I have since been told, by my students, that they're reminiscent of Jolly Ranchers Watermelon)

    So feminine and light!!! I tell you, it weighs nothing! (and the bracelet, according to my dad, looks like candy...)
    But the necklace, I just don't know about.  I mean, I like it.  I just don't know if I like it for me. You know?  Here's a close-up:
    It is a lot of fun, this necklace, but I just don't know.  This one may make it into the shop...
    So that was the week.  This weekend, I worked on bracelets that some ladies I work with ordered.  I'm not done with the one order (4 African Helix bracelets for Christmas gifts) but I got a pretty good start on it.  Here's some of what I did:
    I love the topaz shades against the mossy green here.  Such a fun color combo!

    Black with silver. The customer I made this for wants it to match a necklace she already has.  I'll find out this week if she likes it!

    Something I'm playing with--a Spiral rope with gradations of color to emulate a blooming tree. I kinda like it!
     Here's a close-up of that last one:
    I love Spiral Rope.  For all that it's a relatively simple stitch, it's so variable!  There's literally, from what I can tell, no limit to what you can do with it!  I plan to play with some more spirals this week, while also working on some more helix bracelets.

    Hope you like the new work!

    09 October 2010

    Hee hee... I has pretty blog...

    So yes, I have a pretty blog now.  In my online wonderings the other day, I found a link to Shabby Blogs, a very nifty site that has all sorts of free headers and backgrounds and fun stuff! So now, I have a pretty blog!  This is the Shabby Blooms pattern, isn't it cute? 

    I still can't get the dividers to work, but I have the tags and everything!

    Megan, the brilliant crafty brain behind the site, has also provided a number of tutorials to create various other things, including badges!  I'm going to work on that next.  

    Hope you like it!

    R. Wilson

    oh, and feel free to follow me, too... the link's over there on the right... :D

    06 October 2010

    No-Craft Crafty Wednesday...

    So, I had a rather good crafty day, although I haven't made a thing (I was in class all day...) But, I had a friend at work who desperately needed a gift, so there went my favorite earrings (it's okay, I can make more!) And then I got home to see an email that I had been included in a Collection on Artfire.  Check it out below! Woo-Hoo!!!!!!!! :D