Monday, May 25, 2009

Happy Memorial Day!!!!



Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Still hibernating...

Well I was moving along hot and heavy there for awhile but then it got the best of me. I've successfully missed posting in the month of April and half of May. But that doesn't mean I have been sitting idle, no actually that would be an understatement.

So this year has been very weird. Many happenings good and bad. And they just keep giving. Right now a dear friend (my age) has had two strokes in a six day period. The plaque is breaking off between his corroded artery and his brain so there is no way to stop the blood flow because you just can't do that to the brain without severe side affects (DEATH). So they are trying to fix him by giving him medicine. His first stroke occurred while at home in West Virginia. Then after being released he and his wife decided to go to the beach for a relaxing Mom's Day. Well the second stroke happened on Saturday in OC. So we all learned that Berlin, MD is the home of a stroke center in their hospital where he has been through 1 pm today. He is currently in route back to West Virginia by ambulance which had to be contracted for and since it is departing from Maryland, you MUST have a certified EMT in the State of Maryland riding in the ambulance. And the poor guy doesn't have insurance so the story just goes on. Hopefully his ride today will be uneventful and we can get him back to the rehab center in Martinsburg (that would accept him without insurance for a hefty fee) for them to make his right arm work again. Since Buddy is an auto mechanic and that is their livelihood, it is imperative that he gets it working again. Knowing him, I believe he can. However, we must get the problem resolved too. That is another thing for the doctors to fix before the plaque breaks off again. We aren't sure right now what is next. But say some prayers again for him please. Seems like that's all I've been asking for this year. But it's for another worthy cause who truly needs it.
I apologize to Rosemary and Jana for not following up on all the challenges going on at their Opus-Gluei site but I have been doing things at home. Like my comfort foods are ba-sketti (or spaghetti as others call it) and mashed potatoes. Those always seem to be the foods of choice unless ice cream is involved and then it's hands down ice cream. I had other items identified to do but just never got to them. I will try to do better but not sure when that will actually be.
I wanted to post the cards I made for the "Aunties" for Mom's Day. I also made one for my MIL which I took to the cemetery on Mom's Day too. Just felt like it was something I had to do too. Then I went and visited with my aunties and had dinner with them. When I got home, I called my Mom in Florida and talked to her and my dad for quite awhile. They liked the cards too. It was a nice Mom's Day too.
This is my Aunt Fran's card.
All the insides said "Rock" in same color as the "MY" on cover.
This is my Aunt Blanche's card.

And this is my Aunt Ag's card.

And this is my MIL's card.

Oh and my uncle doesn't know it yet, but he's getting an "Uncle" card for Dad's day so he doesn't feel left out.
This is my Uncle Red's card.
BTW I'm Flakey - hmm are you really surprised!!!!

I made the cards with pictures of them from the years that I acquired from my MIL's house and scanned into the computer. Pretty cool huh??? And I used alphabet letters which I have had forever too. All in all, it was a very fun and rewarding project! Ok, fun anyway!
Well that's all I have for right now but I wanted to post something to show that I'm still here. I have a meeting tonight I must attend for the MC HPC (Monkey County Historic Preservation Commission) to deny our request for vinyl siding on my grandmom's house that we still own and rent out. You see it's located in Takoma Park in Monkey County MD and it was declared a historic property because it's a Sears house. Neat you say. No way!!! With that wonderful distinction, it means that you MUST follow all the HPC regulations BEFORE you change the property at all. So we have been paying to paint the wood house every 3-5 years because if you don't you get cited from the City. Then if you don't do it right, you get cited by the City. And if you don't cut your grass, cut the trees, take down the ivy, etc., etc., you get cited by the City. And it's just such a wonderful distinction that you pay more and more money to Monkey County to try and meet the requirements. So I am making Monkey County take the time and research the request to only deny the request but at least I feel a little better because some of my tax money was spent on their salaries to do the research. What a bunch of crap!!! Anyway that is at 7:30 in downtown Silver Spring so I must leave in a bit to go down 29 to get there. Oh joy!!! We should have sold the damn house when we lost my grandmom back in 88. Then it would be someone else's problem. Now we pay and boy do we pay.
Sorry for the rambling but that's the breaks. Watch what you wish for and do your research on historic properties before you buy them. Or in our case, if you already own it and they designate it historic, then you get to pay whopping fees to the government in order to maintain the property you already own. Quite a racket if I do say so myself!!!

Well hope all are well. Hugs to all & I'll be back on later.

Monday, March 30, 2009

I Wrote A Poem...

Lightning is going to strike. Hell is going to freeze over. The oceans are going to part. Stand back, Karen wrote a poem for the Aunts this weekend. Wow, imagine that. What is happening to me? I don't know. I'm really beginning to scare myself what with yoga, trying to take care of ME, reading spiritual type books, agreeing to meet John's family for Easter brunch, planning on going to do the Stations of the Cross (OMG Rosemary I haven't done it since grade school -- that's like ancient history... and I had to look it up on the Internet for a refresher lesson but I think I'm ready), and all the other changes I've been making. But there was a very important reason that sparked the poem, really there was. You see last Tuesday we lost another one of our family icons, Uncle Johnny died of cardiac arrest. Uncle John sat by Cecilia's side during her month long fight after her stroke. He was her older brother. So what was five is now down to three. Only the Aunties remain. So last week was a time of visiting and grieving. Tomorrow is the viewing and Wednesday is the funeral for yet another family legend.

So I visited two of John's Aunts (Fran & Ag) that live alone in Laurel last Wednesday nite. The third Aunt (Blanche) lives with her hubby of many years (Leland) in Oxon Hill. All I remember is that's out there near Andrews AFB but the other side of the world for me. So while thinking about Uncle John and realizing how lucky we were to have him for all these years and how lucky he was to go so quickly and not suffer endlessly, I decided to write a poem to show my feelings. I would then create cards and send to the three sisters to show them how much they mean to us. It goes like this:

Although we may not talk every day,
Although we may not always say it out loud,
We love you more than words can convey.

That's it. Short, sweet and to the point. So now what do I do. Hmmm, well I have all these silly pens I have bought over the years. And I seem to remember taking a calligraphy class way back when. Do you think I might be able to use that skill? I will try. So try I did. And I wrote out the poem three times (yes, Rosemary & Jana, it's in my own handwriting). I then attached card stock to it and then made three cards. I had to put something in to represent my being known as the "flaky" or "crazy" niece because I love them all dearly and I don't always see their point of view so they have thought I was always a little flaky. Imagine that!!! Karen flaky. No way! At least I have an excuse cuz I married into that family I was not born into it naturally. Hmmm, excuse or mistake...... Well the QuicKutz egg with the chick feet coming out just cracked me up -- get it!!! So I put the Revolution size on the cards. I love the result. I used flowers, ribbons, scrap card stock, stickles, buttons, and pens. I even went and bought colored envelopes to meet the festive nature of the occasion. I hope they will love them as much as I loved doing them. Pictures are included. Oh yeah and I had to give credit to John Frank (their actual blood nephew and my hubby) on the card but I signed my name first. Hee, hee...

Enjoy the pics. I'll be off line again for a few but I'll be back! I promise with more stupid thoughts from flaky Karen.

Take care and hugs to ya all (my loyal now three readers!!!)

P.S. I didn't know that Chartreuse & Co. was only open once a month. Bummer!!! I went back Saturday to get more bracelets, Ro, cuz I thought those would make great presents for upcoming birthdays. Too bad I didn't think about with you. Next month's dates are around the 17-19th. .

P.P.S. Here's my pin Rosemary! See it is three colors!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Opus Gluei Spring Challenge

Ok so Rosemary and Jana put out a challenge to do something that showed the signs of Spring in your own way. Well I started this morning and finished my project from start to finish. Now don’t expect this every time you set up a challenge but this one was just too much fun to not complete it all at once. I even took time out to go help my hubby today when he called from the office frantic because he needed my help. (Yeah Rosemary, lightning is going to strike yet!!! But it’s a real good thing! I took care of paying bills for him and that meant he got another two hours to work on others taxes as that is his livelihood and he’s quite busy right now.) So I came back to my craft room and started from scratch. I had jotted down some thoughts. Now I had to make them come to life. So what does Spring mean to me….
Birds Chirping
Flowers Blooming
Sweet Ocean Breezes
Colors Popping
Walks Outside
Climbing Mountains
Blue Skies
Silly Girls Playing Dress-up
More Flowers Blooming
Pretty Views
Enjoying Life
Sounds of life at 75/80 again
Cruising TOPLESS

So take a look at my little book of Spring. I even used my Bind-it-all to put it together tonight. I hope you like the result.

Hugs to ya,

Saturday, March 21, 2009

What a great day

So Rosemary and I met up today for my initiation to Chartreuse & Co. WOW! It's a very cool place. Very much like Yesteryear Farms which used to be off Hipsley Mill Road in Damascus (but no one seems to remember that wonderful place so maybe I was dreaming it). Nawwww. But today we went antiquing thru barns, cottages, outside sheds, and other hang-outs on this wonderful old farm in Buckeystown, MD. What a find. Thanks Casii for introducing it to Rosemary so she could introduce it to me too. We both came home with goodies. We got some bracelets and some old hats. We put the hats on and had our pictures taken. We were driving around after our shopping spree and after talking to Jana while going up the stairs in the wonderful little cottage full of color on this little spree totally making her green with envy because she was just down in Virginia Beach popping out the pages and projects all by herself (yep she was having fun too just in another state far away from us but we were together by phone). Anyway while driving around looking for Casii who was out with her youth group, we had our hats on. We were laughing and giggling and having loads of fun. We couldn't seem to find Casii so Rosemary called her home. We left a message and a little while later the phone rang. You see we had spent sooooooo much time on that wonderful farm that we had missed seeing Casii and her team on the side of the road. But many drivers that we passed had quite the faces when they saw us in our new hats. I think we looked very nice and ready for our Sunday-go-to-meeting type night but others may disagree. But we didn't care and we had a great time.

Look at all the goodies just waiting for someone to take them home.
Then we went up to Frederick to another quaint little shop run by a friend of Rosemary, sorry the name escapes me, but she has the best inventory of vintage clothing, shoes, jewelry and linens that I've seen in one place in a long time.
Then off to the Candy Kitchen - dare I saw more and then to meet David for lunch/dinner at the Black Hog (is that right Rosemary) the best little BBQ joint in Frederick. WOW was that tasty too. I'm soooo full that I'm ready to pop. But it was entirely worth every bite.

Well here's some of our finds. Enjoy -- we sure did!

gotta love finding things that you had growing up; you relive memories all over again and it's just cheap fun; we had a ball just telling each other who had what and how pretty everything looked in the colors and sections that were set up to show off all the beautiful things

This is my stash, including the bracelets, hat, beaded ring, little straw change purse. and wooden file box. The pretty little plate is Sanyo china from occupied Japan. It's a beautiful blue with silver trim. Pretty little find too.

Hugs to ya all,

Monday, March 16, 2009

So what did you do this past weekend????

Costco was advertising a special on a little machine that looks intriguing to me. It was this cute little inexpensive machine that you manually loaded and uploaded your negatives. Yeah those 35mm type negatives slot by slot. You can also do it with slides supposedly. So being the adventuresome idiot that I am, I got a new negative scanner that was cheap. So on Sunday, I actually scanned in 369 negatives. Yep, individually inserting the little holder, looking at each negative, scanning, saving, and moving on to do more. So I got a good start on many, many negatives in my possession. The funny part is that you can even do the little tiny ones but that will absolutely drive you crazy (or in my case crazier!!) as you have to adjust the negatives in the holder each time as those don't really match the holder opening itself. It's more of a slide type set up if you get my drift.
But my little sister's wedding pics, our wedding pics, some doggie pics, graduation, other old photos are loaded to the SD card that came with it. I saved the images to my computer and had my own little slide show last nite. Now I have to fix the upside down and backwards ones but hey they are now in a jpg file. How cool is that???
And I copied the 10 CDs (yes that would be 10 in total) that were scanned in for me the weekend before last at our OC crop to my computer. I backed up my files twice. One backup will be brought to work and the other will reside at home. At least that way I have a back-up plan with off-site coverage just in case. I have to go get the little "sticks" so I can upload to those things too so I can carry around pieces of me for viewing purposes.
My projects for hubby's birthday this Thursday are 3/4 finished. He doesn't know it but he's getting two (three if I can finish the last one) picture frames with his family pics in it. The first one is actually for his office which contains four pics of his DAD which he has been saying for years that he has none of "Chief" and wants to get some. So in sifting through his Mom's house, I absconded with some, scanned and printed them and put in the frame for him. It covers from 1945 through 1990 so he now has his Dad in the Army, on his wedding day, another one in Paris, and last one at his 75th birthday party. All just plain "Chief" no one else in the pictures, just him. Pretty damn cool if I do say so myself!!! And so handsome too! Muscles on that man to make you swoon!
Then the next one is one of those collage type frames from AC Moore where they are 3x5 and 4x6 pics in a plastic type frame. It's three dimensional and kind of retro but very cool (IMO). I printed all the pics of his family (including all of us that married into it and the nieces & nephews too) and put in each slot. I think there were like 11 - 15 slots for pics. I then journaled what each picture represented, printed on card stock, and attached to the back of each picture. You can read thru plastic frame on back too. I like this one too and hope it stays at home and not in his office. But we will have to fight over that one. That's ok because I bought two more frames to do more for my walls at home with many more pics to choose from too. Ha, ha!
The last one is the digital frame I got awhile ago. I thought when I bought it that it was four digital frames in one but it turns out it's one digital frame with three static frames that you choose your favorites and put in like normal picture frames (only one moves through the slide show with your chosen digital photos). Guess four together would be a little too much on the eyes now wouldn't it!!! But you know my brain - I thought wow I could put four SD cards in there and you'd never run out of pictures. I could actually give you a headache while viewing all the pictures. LOL!! So I'm now trying to choose three 4x6 or 5x7 (to cut down) and put in the static frames and copy and put together slide show for his last present.
Ah yes, it seems to be a picture type birthday this year. But when he doesn't want anything I couldn't come up with a gift that would be better received than his family memories all together for his birthday. Hopefully he will appreciate all that has gone into this effort and project. Now it might take him until April 16th to actually see it all to appreciate it but at least he'll have some cherished memories to look over when his tax season is over officially.
Well got to run but wanted to post my weekend festivities. Not as much fun as Rosemary's birthday celebration but I got lots done. Oh and the deer have been out back for three mornings too feeding out back -- four of them!!! Birds are chirping -- I think Spring is finally coming!!!

Have a great week!


Monday, March 9, 2009

OC Crop A Blast!!!!

So I actually worked 37.5 hours through Thursday so that I only had to work 2.5 hours on Friday and could leave to go to Cropmania's Weekend in Ocean City. I can't believe that it's already come and gone. We had an absolute blast giggling and being silly all weekend long. And the weather, wow! It was in the 80s yesterday to the point where I didn't want to come home. Sunny too down there. Absolutely gorgeous.

We walked the beach on Saturday morning after breakfast just enjoying the sun and heat while picking up shells on the sand. We watched the four legged babies running after birds, balls and other items wading in the water too. We stuck our feet in the water and then they froze! Not quite that cold but pretty damn close! LOL!!! These are the pictures of Celena, her mom, Denise, and me in my glasses too.

We played games and one was like the price is right but with scrappin goodies. They had a box of goodies that they described and said ok write down the price -- honor system now. So I said I wasn't gonna play but Celena said I'd know the prices. So I wrote down $53.95 and waited to hear how off I was. They started with anyone between $25 & $60 stand up. So lots of us stood up. Then anyone $30 or under sit down. Then anyone $55 or over sit down. Then $40 and under sit down. $45 and under sit down. Then $50 and under sit down. So there were 2 people left -- ME and another lady. So Michele said Karen what do you have & I said $53.95. Then she asked the other lady and she said $55 even. Michele kind of looked at her because she had said $55 or over sit down but this lady thought she was special and that didn't apply to her. But she lost and I won. The actual price was $54.12 - I was a mere $.07 off -- guess I do know my prices after all. So I got some more papers, magic mesh, ribbon (oh no), letter stickers and a 12 x 12 box. I packed that box with my goodies on the way home and was very happy with my winnings.

Then we took classes learning more about quilting with pictures, pretty cool too but loads of cuts which get a little tedious. Another clear acrylic book which I like very much and am doing one for a wedding present for later this summer. And an acrylic & chipboard book which I have to finish and add pictures to go on my desk at work. Then later we played games and here's pics of Celena and Dawn with hats on after they made pages and you steal the hats from others in the hopes that you are still wearing them when the bell rings. They both won too.

We did our word books. I actually finished one HOLIDAYS book, glued another one completely with papers and cut out the other four books too. Didn't get to the CECILIA or CINOTTI books but that's ok cuz I got quite a good start on the HOLIDAYS books for my sisters, brother & Mom & Dad for this year's presents. Pretty good too. Pics are here for your viewing. The embellishments have yet to be added but I'm proud that I got the book completed. Now come ribbons (oh no Rosemary do we need to go to Hagerstown???) and journaling (yes I plan on doing that too) and tags too.

I got all my pictures scanned in and put on CDs as well as some copies of my Glenda book copied and printed digitally on 12 x 12 pages so I can have my OWN book of Glenda while returning hers to her family. All in all my little project that I estimated originally to be about 50-100 pictures, then increased to approximately 300 pictures was way underestimated. I actually had -- are you ready??? are you sitting down??? you'd better sit and make sure you are fully in your chair!!!! cuz the final count was 2460 pictures scanned in for me. Now that doesn't count the 12 x 12s and other fixed photos they did. The only thing I did estimate right was the price. I'm happy to say that I now have the photos plus others of my own scanned on 10 CDs and it was all worth every penny.

Letters are embossed and/or crackle painted with Tim Holtz products. The entire book comes in pieces of cardboard and separate letter. You must assemble the entire book yourself. It's quite a cool project and comes out fantastic. But it is lots of love in this project.

The papers were Daisy D's and Creative Imaginations from my collection of Christmas papers. These are from many years of collecting so they may be last year's models but I don't care because they came out great together. I love mine and I'm sure my family will too.

Can't wait to finish the CECILIA and CINOTTI books too now that we had those pics all scanned in. I will have many to choose from and the family gets to tell us who is who. This too will be a fun family project.
Well GTG. It's time for beddy bye!!! Good nite to all my loyal readers. Have sweet dreams!
Hugs to ya,