Friday, January 31, 2014

Travel Journal Cover

I stayed home the other day to nurse my eye. Part of nursing is also nourishing your soul- and how you'll heal faster if your soul is happy. So I spent a little time working on the cover of a travel journal I am putting together.
Made me very happy.
I like to try different things when I make a journal, see what I like.  My last few travel journals I used a small ringed binder I picked up at Staples that I was happy with, but this time I wanted to try a slightly different shape. So I picked up a Maya Road chipboard book that's still a ringed binder. Love rings so I can  rearrange pages as the day calls for.
This isn't quite the journal I used, but this is another Maya Road journal. Mine is more square and my inner pages don't have the tabs.
 Happy the way my cover came out. Not sure my embossing on the spine is my all time favorite, but still like how it worked out. I covered the chipboard spine with some aluminum tape, embossed with an embossing tool and then used brown, mahogany and black paint over the tape.
The lovely lady on the cover is from the Abraham Lincoln stamp set by Oxford Impressions.
I think she is suppose to be Mary Todd Lincoln but to me she looked kind of like a Spanish lady who might be an historic local in New Mexico where I am heading off too.
In 3 weeks!
I also used a Tim Holtz frame and a small religious medal I had in the stash. I added a little paint to the medal to make it look antiqued. The oval I cut was a lot smaller than the frame opening so I slid in some copper patined paper I had from eyars ago, did a bit of stenciling on it too. I know it doesn't look like an old photo but I love the image it portrays.
On the cover I used some paper scraps and lots of stenciling with paints. I'm happy with the texture it has.
I should just say I am happy overall with the cover. A lot less writing that way.
So the eye is getting there- a little less swelling every day and a little less purple every day. Man, the different shades of purple it has been is amazing- plum, pinkish, Crayola marker purple...
here's my original post in case you are curious.
Thanks for visiting.
Hope to see you again soon.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

A Couple of Cats

Cards for the college girl today.
A couple of kitties that make me smile.
My photo cut off a lot of the edges of this second card. There's a white doodled trim at the bottom too. Its a white card with a green panel that's got these sun rays on it. Kind of hard to tell that too. 
I'll try to get another photo that's better if I think about it before I mail it out to the college girl.
Maybe I should have switched the sayings on these- now that I am looking at them together.
But at this point its too late-at least for these 2 quick and playful cards.
Images are from Paper Smooches.
Its called 9 Lives and I think that middle cat like I used on my second card is a riot.
Words on the top card is from Flourishes.
Not sure what's going on over there but they are unloading their stock- this week its all 20% off.
Hope they aren't going out of business, seems like there's a lot of places going out lately.
Kind of sad, does that mean crafty things aren't as popular as they were a few years back?
Means us obsessive people lose shopping possibilities and have to do more on-line shopping.
Hope my favorite store down in Massachusetts isn't next!

So the week is winding down. Talent show at school tonight that my National Honor
 Society kids put on. Will be a long night for me, but should be a good night too.
Or at least I hope it is!!!!

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Upcoming Journeys-part 1

We're almost into February.
Where is time flying?
I've gt a couple of journeys coming up next month.
For a short weekend adventure, I'm traveling north to my alma mater.
We've got a hockey game to go see!
Lets hope this time a puck doesn't find its way into my eye last it did last weekend.
I don't get back here very often- its 3 1/2 hours away in the middle of no where, but I do look forward to visiting, going to get pizza and beer at my old haunts, a little memory visit.
Still a couple of weeks out, but I am looking forward to a break and a change of scenery.
And I hope, I get to see a BIG win too.
We're getting close to playoff time.
I will admit, having this hockey obsession
makes the cold winter go faster.
Need something to get me out of the house other than work.
I could spend a lot more studio time
but all art and no play makes Erika a dull girl.
Oh man, that was bad.
Can you tell its early in the day?
Well I'm off to spend the day with my new classes.
Thanks for stopping by.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014


I love the background on this page!!!!!
 I did some painting and spraying through a Crafter's Workshop stencil
called Cell Theory.
Then I stamped these red hearts from Dylusions Rubber Stamps.
Dylusions-Rubber Stamp-In Betweenies
Its the In-Betweenies set.
I like how you can sort of see the hearts but not too too much.
Then I used another Dylusions stamp to make the numbers.
Dylusions-Rubber Stamp-Basic Backgrounds
Basics Background
The other stamped words are from an ancient Nick Bantock stamp and from a Chocolate Baroque steampunk stamp set.
 The stampunkish balloon is from the same set.
I stamped it on glossy cardstock, colored and cut it out.
Been loving these steampunk stamps lately.
Chocolate Baroque has been having a month long 25% off sale and I've done a couple of orders-
I'm still loving this background!
Would make a great fabric.
I'd love to design fabrics.
I have a hard time covering over some of my favorite backgrounds.
Do you?
Thanks for stopping by.
Make something you love today.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Keeping a Low Profile

The injured eye has forced me to keep a low profile this weekend.Watched a bunch of old X File episodes, made a couple of cards and Saturday night watched Maine beat UNH in hockey up at Orono, the Maine campus. Yes!! That was so exciting. Mostly I iced my eye a lot and tried not to look at myself in the mirror-
the amount and darkness of the purple is scary!!!
So here's a journal page from last week.
The background is some painted stencil images and some blue Dylusions ink spray. I stamped the words and butterflies. Also the leaves which I used a water brush with some green Dylusions ink in it to color those leaves.
Thanks for a visiting today.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Aggresively Icing

We had hockey tickets for this past Friday night.
Our rival school- the school my daughter attends- University of New Hampshire.
Me at home just before the game.
The hubby and myself during the game.
And then me during the 3rd period of the game.
You can see Dave holding the puck here, and me icing my ice with some ice the paramedics gave me.
Now look at me.
This is Friday night after I got home from the game AND the emergency room.
Had to be sure my eye was A OK.
I was aggressively icing all day yesterday.
Missed having stereo vision all day too.
But even worse than eye-
was we lost that game by 1 point.
What a night.

Saturday, January 25, 2014

On Paper and Reading

Some recommended reading for you and a little secret.
Did that catch your attention?
First off-
I discovered this awesome paper magazine awhile back when I was browsing at Barnes and Noble's one afternoon. Never a wasted moment browsing a bookstore, but even better when you find something as exciting as this. This is a Dutch magazine but there is an English version too. (Also German.)

This is  the latest, just released issue #4.  Ordered mine but it hasn't arrived yet. Can't wait to see what kind of eye candy issue this will be.
 If you haven't seen FLOW, its for paper lovers, but not a strictly crafty magazine even though it contains crafts. There's stories, pages to cut up, great images, and lots of color- both photos and drawings.
Arty but not just about art.
Here's the link so you can check it out  yourself.
And for you cooks out there-
I found this blog
(you cooks probably already know about it-
once again I'm trailing behind the pack)
called Joy the Baker.
Since I like the blog,
I picked up a copy of her cookbook-
also called
what else?
Joy the Baker.
LOVE it!!!!!
Here's what I want to try out sooner rather than later:
bacon black pepper waffles
avocado pound cake
peanut butter birthday cake
and several more that I won't tempt you with.
I really like the selections in this cookbook, and I'll let you know how they actually taste since I'm making the waffles and the pound cake this weekend.
I hope at least.
And my secret-
And I'm getting ready for my next travel adventure!!!!

The hubby and I leave in a month.  Going to do a little sightseeing, relax, spend some time with our friends in Taos, laugh a lot and have some fun. Get away from this arctic New Hampshire cold.
I hope this last reason to go away is true and the winter freeze doesn't follow us out there. I'm hoping for a bad weather free trip-especially on the traveling ends of the trip.
I went out there last February to stay with  my friends for a week but the hubby couldn't get the time off from work, so I'm taking him  there this year. I really liked it out there, and I'm excited to go back. Not very often I take a return trip to an area so soon.
More to come about this adventure in future posts.
Happy reading or baking or adventuring or whatever it is you are up to today.

Friday, January 24, 2014

Latest Journaling

Another chilly morning in New Hampshire, but it is Friday, and it is the last day of this semester at school. Yeah. Next week we'll start fresh for the second half of the school year.
Good or bad-I'll know next week how my new classes look.
And tonight we're going to another hockey game-this time at our rival school- The University of New Hampshire, where my daughter goes. We need a win on the road in a bad way.Let's hope it is tonight because its always good to beat your rival. Especially when your daughter goes to your rival  school and you can rub it in- in a fun friendly way that is.

So onto the art which is why you stopped by.
Here's some backgrounds I made the other evening.

I'm happy with how these background came out.
You'll see these again some other time I'm sure.
Thanks for stopping by and come back again another time.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Vintage Finds

When I was home on Monday I finally got around to cleaning the little attic space behind my studio. I wanted it to store my fall and holiday art supplies- since they are now out of the way and make a little more space in the studio. Plus, I can get to them easily so it seemed like the perfect  no brainer way to gain that extra space.
And when I cleaned I had a bananza. I found this bag of vintage clothing.  
Most of it isn't that old, but they're vintage to me, items I had in my 20's (and before) and I  wondered where they had disappeared to.
I really thought I had put them into a charity bin years ago.
But then again, all of these have a special connection to me.
This pink sweater is  my first knitted item ever!!!! 
My college roommate and friend Lorrie taught me to knit (my Nana tried when I was about 10 but I needed some memory jogging at about 28) and I started on this sweater. Pretty good for a novice!
And here's an Icelandic sweater I bought on my trip to Scandinavia in 1985. I had picked it up in 
Copenhagen during the couple of days I hung out there way back when I was youthful.
And here's a sweater my Nana knitted me back when I was in high school.
I miss my Nana a lot; she and I were pretty close. All I had to do was ask and she'd
knit one for me.
Nana's are fantastic like that.

And this skirt was a maxi skirt back in the 1960's. It was my Mom's, and she gave it to me when I was in my 20's. I cut it down and made a work skirt out of it back in the day when I was a young skinny teacher.

Here's another couple of sweaters my Nana knit for me.

These reindeer sweater swere all the rage back in my college days in Orono, Maine. My Mom had actually started this for me back when I was in high school, but Mom was never much of a knitter.
Yet she finished it up for me when I pleaded to have it done so I would be like everyone else on campus.
Now Katie wants it.
Another sweater I knitted. I unfortunately I ended up felting it by accident, but that never stopped me from wearing it.
Finally a 1950's ski sweater that was my Auntie's, but she gave it to me.  I love the pattern and design of sweater. Still.
Now if only I was small enough to still fit in all of them.
I could use one today-
it is brutally cold here in New Hampshire.
Stay warm.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Foodie Cards

Ok, a couple of pretty uncomplicated cards today. I like simple cards. I made these last weekend, perfect to send to my daughter at college. It if I go simple, I can make several cards and have my stash made for her at school. She'd rather get a bunch than get a few.
All words and images are from Paper Smooches.
This is the set I used called Calorie Free.
This second card is about as simple as you can get. The only thing I did was cut out the sushi image and color the image too.
Still, even without a whole lot of creativity behind it all, it works.
And I think the saying on the card says what it is.
So if you make cards, do you like them simple or layered with lots of details.
(My layered with lots of details cards just look kind of too busy and too much.)
Well that's all for me from the cold Northeast.  Have a super duper day.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Soul Music

Back to work as another weeks begins. Awful quiet with Katie back at school now. As usual the weekend buzzed right by, but it was 3 days so that was fantastic.
Thought I'd show you this journal page.
More about the background than the design on the background.
All about the music of your soul.
My soul music is color and paints and images.
What's yours?

Monday, January 20, 2014

Good to Eat

Disappointing football game for us New Englanders yesterday.
Seasons done. Football is over.
Always a bit of a let down even though you know someone has to lose.
We had our friends Sherry and Keith over to watch the game so yesterday morning I cooked up a storm.
A pan of smutty brownies.
A pot of chili.
And for breakfast for us before the game
Have you seen these at Trader Joe's?
(If you have Trader Joe's near you That us.)
You put them out and let them rise overnight and then bake them.
They look like this when they are finished.
Especially with sausage and eggs.
I ate so much food yesterday I need to skip it today completely.
So I'm planning on some studio time this morning and then got to take the daughter and her things back to college for her last semester.
Her last semester?
I am in shock about that.
Really excited to have today off- and having a short week of classes because of it.  Last week with my kids too,
next week I get new kids and new classes.
Half way through my year too.
Holy cow-
Where does  time go?

Sunday, January 19, 2014


Yesterday our light snow, a little rain turned into SNOW!

It stunk. We were suppose to go into Boston to see our favorite hockey team- our college team UMaine-play Boston College. We didn't make it because the roads were SOOOOOOOOO bad.
My photos are reversed here. The one of my backyard is when it started to snow and the roads are in the afternoon.
Katie and I each had a delicious drink when I got home. Applehead beer and some vanilla vodka.
And on our way home on the bad roads (since we did try to get there) we stopped at the grocery store and had to buy some bummer down in the dumps emotional pick up food. You know, eat and drink away the blues.
It did help.
We were able to stream the game on the computer and since we lost, and since it was still snowing when we would have had to drive home, I guess we made the right choice coming home and not heading into Boston.
We did have a hockey game on Friday night too, down in Lowell, Massachusetts. And we made it to that one.
And we tied that game rather than getting run over like the game we missed last night..
So today is a BIG football game here in New England.
Pats versus Broncos.
We have some friends coming by, which I have mixed feelings about. Really wanted a DOWN quiet day so I could just chill,
but then they invited us out and we didn't want to go so we invited them here.
So much for a real arty day this weekend
since tomorrow I have to move the daughter back to school.
And my resolution was to make time for what I really wanted this new year.
Anyhow, still only Sunday of a 3 day weekend.
Hope its a good day for you.
And I must add-