Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Writing Exercise!

I found this writing exercise on this website, I think it's a good one and I am going to attempt it below.


On vacation, at a lake (or at the beach, or in the mountains-- anywhere not urban) someone has an encounter with a wild animal: this might be a bat in the house or a fishing eagle or a water snake or sea gull. Describe the encounter and what happens next. For memory writing, this might be an actual incident; in fiction, it could be a story someone tells or an event that explores a character's personality.


The water was cold, but I had been floating around and swimming in the lake for the better part of the afternoon with my best friend Beth.  I signed in contentment looking up at the sky.  Dusk was coming and that meant we needed to head back to camp to help get dinner ready.  

This was my favorite time of the year, my parents took off two whole weeks, and we spent 7 uninterrupted days at our lakeside campground.  We owned the property, and it was only about three hours form our house,but there was no phone, no Internet, no cable, no electricity at all really.  I always got to choose a friend to take with me, since I didn't have any brothers and sisters to keep me occupied, and I always took Beth.

Mom had one of those Ranch style triangles by the front door of the cabin and rang it to let us know when she needed us.  You could see the lake from the front door, but it was a little ways off.  I flopped back into the water, dragging my inner-tube behind me as I swam for shore.  Beth was already collecting our towels and the other things we had brought out with us for the afternoon.  

Beth had fiery red hair and very pale skin which sun burned easily, she had retreated to the shade about an hour before hand, and was reading before my mother rang the bell.  She had everything packed up into the duffel bag before I made it to land.  All I had to do was swing the inner-tube over my shoulder and slip into my flip-flops.  

Mom was getting the fire ready and I was gathering hot-dogs and buns and condiments while Beth got all the plates and started to set the table.  My Dad had gone to the store to get more ice and drinks since we were out of just about everything.  Being outside pretty much all day made one surprisingly thirsty!

My mother got the fire going and we started to roast hot dogs for dinner.  Dad got back just in time with the drinks.  We ate until we couldn't eat another bite and then ate some more.  I think the four of us finished off nearly two whole packages of hot dogs before we gave in.  We sat at the table by the fire playing cards and telling stories.  The fire started to die down and Dad went to get some more wood. 

"Girls, we're out of wood, can you go gather some?  Mom and I thought we could make s'mores!" my father called from where the woodpile should be.

"Sure!" Beth called as we jumped up, excited about the s'mores.  She got the flashlight and ran ahead following the path and I was able to follow behind using the glow of the light on the path to guide me.  I started to fall behind as I stumbled on roots and rocks I couldn't see because Beth was holding the flashlight. 

Laughing and out of breath I called out, "Beth!  Wait up!" she didn't stop, but I heard her laughing as she started to turn around.

That's when I ran into something. 

It knocked me back a little, but I managed to keep my balance.  I took a tentative step forward and reached out gingerly with my finger tips, I still had no idea what might be in the middle of the path, but I did know that it hadn't been there when Beth ran by just a few minutes ahead of me.  So, whatever I had hot, was mobile.  And I was in the middle of the woods, in the white mountains.

I remember my hear beating so fast and l loud that I just knew Beth could hear it on the path ahead of me.  My hands go closer and closer to where I had been, and when they finally touched the obstacle in the path, it was furry. 

My heart did a little flip-floppy leap and I had to swallow a squeal left my head be torn asunder from the rest of my body by the animal I had just run into. without saying a word I backed up again and Beth swung the flashlight around, to find a massive bull moose standing int he middle of the path.  

I had run, bodily, into a Moose!  For those of you who are uninitiated, Moose, are not nice.  They are mean and attack people pretty regularly.  This was not cool.  I backed away and made my way around the Moose, giving him a wide berth and once I was clear I ran to Beth and made her stay right beside me while we got the wood, and cautiously made our way back to the camp.  

I did not have any s'mores.



  

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Seusstastic!

I. LOVE. Dr Seuss!  Theodore Geisel was an amazing person, author artist and activist!  I have always loved Seuss.  Always.  Like, for as long as I can possibly remember.  The cat in the hat was the first book I learned to read.  And thus began a life-long love afair with the written word.


I have even owrked inSeuss Landing at Universal Orlando's Islands of Adventure.  It was kinda super awesome and fun, if only theme park jobs paid better... *sigh*


Anyway, when Julio and I finally have choldren, either biologically or adopted, who knows, our child will have a Dr Seuss themed nursery.  *squee* How filipping COOL is that!  Im not going for book specific here.  So Its not goiung to be all red white and blue for the The Cat in the Hat or anything, but bright colors and crazy characters and no straight lines!  (Did you know that there are no perfectly straigt lines visible in any structure in Seuss Landing?  True Story.)

                      

 Look at those Curves!  Va-va Voom!

I want to have a spectacular mural wall too!  I *think* I can still draw Seuss Characters so I should be abel to DIY it too!

Not sure I can compete with this one though!

I have found a ton of inspirational photos online to work from too!  Do any of you have Seuss Themed rooms in your home?




Friday, August 17, 2012

Curiouser and Curiouser

So, clearly, based on my oh-so-clever title, today's post is headed back to that astounding place called Wonderland!

I wrote a previous post about the excellent costumes in Tim Burton's Alice in wonderland.  Check it out by clicking the link!

I was going to rave about the super awesome graphics, and save this for next time, but I just can't help myself!  The Hubs and I are planning an Alice in Wonderland Photo shoot!  *insane flailing squealing and happy dancing*

We haven't exactly figured out just how we're going to do this, or even have the right amount of people to do it.  But it's been added to our bucket list!  We have a few people slated to help us, but first we need a second camera, one for me and one for Julio.  We will both be shooting so neither of us will be in the photos.  I am wondering if my Friend will lend us her baby to be the mouse... Hmmm...

We need to start collecting props and making, yes making the costumes.  I'm not sure if I want to go traditional or steamy*, or true to period.  What do you think?
* Steampunk donchaknow!

I think I want to make a giant long no sew tutu for my Alice.  Kind of like this one:

Photo from: beautifullyused.com

But blue, and white and creme (Hello, its still Alice in wonderland, DUH) with a white tank top and a giant blue bow... Did I mention that my Alice is a brunette?  Is that weird?

I will have to hit up some thrift stores for some awesome mismatched teacups and saucers and candle sticks and the like. 

I only want a few main characters in the shoot.  Obviously I want Alice and The Mad Hatter and The Rabbit and the Cheshire cat, possibly the rabbit and the mouse if I can get folks to be them.  I might do a separate shoot for the Queen of hearts and the card soldiers.  Is that too much?  Or should they just be included in the Alice one? 

Ugh so much to do!  And I have No flipping Idea where or when exactly I will get to do it either... Any advice?


My newest project! Challenge?

I started a Project 365 yesterday :-)!  It's a daily photo challenge.  Take 1 photo a day (At least) for a whole year.  I am really excited about it!  Right now it's pretty easy to take a photo a day, but I am sure the more I take the harder it will become! 

It will do lots of things too!
A) Improve commitment
B) Improve my photography skills
C) I will have a memory from every single day for an entire year

If you want to follow my progress and help keep me committed check out My Other blog!  Mandeeforlokins365.blogspot.com

Much love!

Monday, August 13, 2012

T-Shirts and Movies and Geekery! Oh My!

So I have kind of been slaking in my Geeky posts!  I am going to try valiantly to make up for it now!
First, hove you been to threadless.com, no?  Go.  Go now.  But keep your wallet locked in a safe for the duration of your visit!  Each time I go I want to buy all the things!  It can be difficult to navigate, but what you find is totally worth the trouble.

Like these little numbers:
Blender Hero ShotA Hero Named... Hero Shot    Play It By Ear Hero Shot                  Alfred's Day Off Hero Shot            TARDamask Hero Shot                           Something Strange, In Your Beverage... Hero Shot

Also, did you know that I heart robots?  No.  Well then, I heart Robots.  Now you know.  And there are some super cute ones to be had! Like these cute kids Craft robots!

From: http://www.redtedart.com
Don't forget this little papercraft cutie!  Download it here!
Paper craft stick cute cartoon robot in big city with green grass Stock Photo - 12249994
 And did you know everyone needs a robot?  Well, they do.  And I have proof!  Just Look! They wrote a song about it and you can find it on the internet so it *must* be true!

I have a confession to make.  I (Like any grunge 90’s kid worth their salt) love the beatles. 
The Bluuuuuuue Meanies (FYI it MUST be said that way.) from Yellow submarine are so the best!  And psychedelic cartoons set to trippy music?  Yes please!  My friends were all about getting stoned and watching it.  (Yes, I really mean friends, I do not partake)

     
And you know what I love more?  Sgt Peppers Lonely hearts club Band: A tribute to the Beatles starring Peter Frampton and the BeeGees and a huge super star cast.  It’s ridiculous and cheesy and I love it.  I might even go so far as to say it’s my all time favorite movie.  Even though I totally cry when Strawberry dies.  My point?  Oh yeah.  Check.  It.  Out.  Here.
And speaking of Peter Frampton,*swoon*,  I know, sad but true.  Hes not so good looking, (I guess he was 70's hot, not my style though) but hes so freaking talented!  Even after all these years!  I went to see Jethro Tull, and he was their opening act, his was the best part of the show!  He’s talented and funny as all get out.  (Rumor has it that he was a bit of an ego case when he was younger though)
Okay now that that particular rant is over.  I also want to say that I am super –dee-duper mad that I haven’t seen any of the new Dr Who’s on BBC America.  I hear they are playing on actual BBC in great Britain, so where the heck is Matt Smith and all his wonder in the states!  Argh!  In the meantime enjoy these lovely whovian shirts and baubles.
    
I do love me some British TV and humor.  Great lead in for “something completely different.”  Tee hee, see what I did there?  That’s right folks Monty Pythons Flying Circus!  I miss this show so much!  We had the entire boxed set on VHS at my grandparents when I was a kid, and I really, really want it on DVD now, but when I see it, I have no money, when I have money I can’t find it!  What’s a girl to do!?
I guess that’s all for now!  In the words of Spock, Live long and prosper. 

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Jewelry Making is Awesome

So, ever since I made that three tiered necklace from my last post, I have been loving me some jewelry making! I have made 5 necklaces and a bracelet!  go me!

Here is the 1st necklace I made:


Not too shabby right?  Was so proud of this thing!  I wore it to work and had a secret little thrill each time someone complimented it.  Is that sneaky?  I think it is, but it's true!

Next I made this:



I have been in love with this charm for ages, and have eyed it in the craft aisle at my local Walmart every time I went down it.  but alas, I wasn't a jewelry maker!  What was I to do!  I am totally into the mixed metals right now, and love the twisted chain look I got on  this one! 

I mean look at this charm!  *squeals of delight*


And then there was no stopping me!  I made this next necklace to go with a new outfit I bought this weekend:

Here are some close-ups of the bottom of the chain.  I love the double chains, This one can be worn 2 ways as well!  This is my favorite way though.  The second way makes it more like 2 necklaces.  the beads are shorter and the gold chain would be long.

               

This one is another mixed metals tribute.  I can't help it!  i love it!


It's hard to tell but he bottom part is actually loosely braided to keep it looking "Tangled".  See, can you tell it's braided?



I can't seem to get a good photo of this one, its one of those dangley chain pendants, I think part of the issue with the photos is that the main chain is white and its on a white background.


Here are some closeups of the pendant.



I made a matching bracelet too, see!



I wanted to make something a little more substantial and chunky to wear with this cute dress I have, and this is what I came up with:

I turned this one to the side because i like the dangley back part and wanted it to show.  What do you think?  do you have any jewelry making advice or expertise or easy patterns to share?  Let me know!



Small Scale Crafts III

I finally made my jewelry making debut!  And it wasn't as hard as I thought it would be.  Granted I DID start pretty small!  I made a necklace.  Not one of those but a chain/rope etc with the jump rings and clasps already attached, so all I have to do is slide on a charm.  Nope.  Raw chain with clasps and jump rings in separate baggies.  And I made a three tiered necklace out of it!  You heard  (read?) right.  I.  Made.  A.  Three.  Tiered.  Necklace.  *Mandee squealing and flailing with joy*

And here is it's Internet debut!
Clearly my jewelry photography leaves something to be desired...

I have also made my final cut of the no sew vest I featured in Small Scale Crafts II.  i used a larger T-Shirt than my test Vest because I wanted it to be extra long.  Whadda ya think?

(This is where I was going to insert a photo of the awesome vest, but taking pictures of myself is not my forte apparently....)

I made this bracelet and headband from scraps left over from the Vest too!

Ugh, pale dry skin... attractive right?



I have also started mini paper crafts.  As seen on epbot.com, made by gustavo santome.  Free downloads!  and doesn't take up much space to complete or to display!  Here is my progress so far!


I am making two of this one.  He comes with a Darth Vader Helmet, so I will make one with and one without the helmet.  I am also using inspiration from this post at epbot.com to make a death star display case. *Huge Goofy Grin*  I am uber excited about this!  It's going to hang on the wall near my husbands computer. 

There's an R2-D2 as well, but I want to have Han and Leia and C3PO to go with him, plus I cant figure out how to make a Millennium Falcon yet... Any suggestions?

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Putting the Art in Nail Art

Okay, so you may or may not know this.  I have recently acquired an obsession.  It’s mildly embarrassing, and will definitely kill some of my geek cred, but I am obsessed with painting my nails.  Like really guys, daily. 
Admitting that makes me cringe a little.  However,  it soothes me after a long day at work, and after exercise, cleaning, cooking and caring for my 2 demanding dogs and my wonderful *husband. 
*Yes he is wonderful and he does help, but he has an extremely demanding day job, so I try to let him relax a little when he gets home
It is pretty mindless, I have to pay attention to it, but I don’t have to think about it too hard.  I can do it while I watch TV, or surf the net, or wait for my roast to finish cooking.  Assuming I am having an ambitious cooking day.
Being a crafter, painting my nails also satisfies my inner artist/crafter.  I am not a great painter or anything, but I have enough skills and patience to do some pretty cool things to my nails!  Lucky for me I have a fairly long nail bed so I don’t have to grow my nails exceptionally long to have the room for some pretty cool stuff!
Here are some of the things I have tired:
Marble swirl – Successful
photo from: nail-design.us
Tie Dye (no water) – Successful!
Photo from: Amberdidit.com
French manicure – Successful
Photo From: sheknows.com

Taping – Semi successful – The technique worked, but I didn’t like the patterns or colors I chose… oops!
Photo From: nailnoise.blogspot.com

Crackle – Successful!  This is easy thanks to sally Hansen!  Base color with crackle top coat! Easy-peasy!
Photo From: hunt4freebies.com

Hombre/Dip Dye – Unsuccessful, but I haven’t given up yet!
Photo From: simoneeeb.blogspot.com

Things I want to try but I am terrified of:
Caviar

Flocking
Swirl tips
Phptp From: Naildirectory.com
This was the best photo I could find... The youtube video was better!
Splatter
Photo From: Nail-Art-101.com
Newsprint
Photo From: iknowhair.com
Stamping – okay I’m not scared of it, I just don’t have a stamping kit!
Nail stamping designs
Photo from: Nailspedia.com
Nail Art has come so far since I was a kid.  Remember when a French Manicure was bearly heard of because it was “so hard” well nail technitians all over the place are putting the Artback into nail art!  

Nerdy nail art next time!