Monday, December 15, 2008

Finally Done!!!!

I don't know why, but I really had a hard time making Christmas cards this year. It was partly just getting motivated to do it, but also coming up with a design. So at long last, yesterday I finally designed and made my cards. It's nothing exciting, and actually kind of basic since I was making so many of them.

Recipe: cardstock SU Kraft and blue bayou, PTI ocean tides, DP SU soft sky collection, ribbon SU cranberry crisp, PTI chocolate, spring rain, ocean tides, dark chocolate, Michael's gold, Ink PTI vintage cream. Stamps SU Star Studded Season, Cornish Herritage Farms Christmas expressions--the sentiment says "O holy night the stars are brightly shining", inside the sentiment says "may the blessings of the season shine upon you"--also from SU Star Studded Season.

As you might imagine, there were a few problems with designing and making my cards so late. For one, I kept running out of supplies (especially ribbon). I had to change colors several times because I didn't have anymore ribbon in the particular color I was using.

I'm loving the Hansel and Grendel story additions. Who knew the turns it would take?
Have a great week!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Whatever Martha!

Have any of you seen the new show hosted by Martha Stewart's daughter, Alexis, and her friend, Jennifer? It's called "Whatever Martha". The basic premise of the show is this; they watch old clips of the Martha Stewart show and joke around about how unrealistic her various crafts/ recipes are. I could totally be another of the hosts of the show because I've never been a big Martha fan. I mean seriously, when the recipe calls for the finest Madagascar cheese cloth to strain the Veuve Clicot champagne infused sheep's brain you're a little out there. So this brings us to last week when YaYa Kimberly calls me and invites me to make Christmas cookies. She was so inspired by the latest issue of MS Living and heck, it's Christmas. Time to do some baking. So YaYa Stacie and I went over to Kimberly's house for a Christmas cookie baking extravaganza.

Kimberly and Stacie had both already made some cookie dough. All we had to do was get the cookie cutters, bake, and decorate. Easy right? I mean just a few simple steps and we would have edible works of art ala Martha. Well, they are definitely edible. Works of art? I'll let you be the judge. Here are some of the cookies before baking. They look okay, right?

Here are some of the finished products...not too shabby, but not quite up to Martha standards I would guess.

Now these next cookies are straight out of the magazine, and they are absolutly precious! It's just 2 Nilla Waffers for the bun, 1 grasshopper cookie for the meat, red/ yellow icing for the ketchup and mustard, and sesame seeds on top for an even more realistic look. Aren't they too cute? Kimberly whipped out a dozen of these in no time at all.

As you might imagine, a teeny tiny bit of cookie consumption was going on through all of this decorating. I think we might have had just a bit of a sugar high going. We started having a little more fun with our creations....

To further illustrate the crazed sugar high concept, here is exhibit B. Why yes, that is me, holding a lovely little cookie. What is that cookie you ask???

Well, it's a traditional Christmas outhouse cookie of course! I'm not sure I can even remember how this whole outhouse topic came up, but I think it went something like this. Stacie brought a gazillion cookie cutters to use. Some of my favs were the little bitty stars. Stacie cut out a teeny star out of some dough, and commented that it looked like the star/ moon cut out in an outhouse door. Being in my sugar induced haze, I thought, "an outhouse, yes, that's what I'll make next". So with no cookie cutter, or pattern; nothing but my own brilliance I made this super fab outhouse cookie. Take that Martha!

Debbie, I know you're traumatized already reading this, so you'd better cover your eyes and scroll down. After I had crafted this work of art, I thought that it still needed something. I thought perhaps it needed some words above the door. When I asked what I should write up there, without missing a beat, Kimberly suggested "Sh*t happens". So, thus it came to be. My little Christmas sh*t house. My mother must be so proud of me...

By this time, the sugar was REALLY kicking in. We even made a little Christmas vignette.
We weren't sure if these guys were rejects from a Dutch boy band, or what. We named them Hansel and Grendel (no, not Gretel, he's a boy! He's named after the character in Beowulf). There was a minute there in my sugar induced state of euphoria that I was afraid they'd break out singing "Macho, macho man..." ala The Village People.

I thought perhaps my readers could create a little story. You could just add on to the story in the comments. Here, I'll start. Once upon a time, there were two young boys named Hansel and Grendel. Grendel had grown very tired of his life as a back-up clog dancer for Abba. One day, he convinced Hansel to take a trip out into the lovely Dutch country side....

So, if you've made it this far through the post, you should probably reward yourself with a fresh, homemade cookie. Just remember, friends don't let friends create on a sugar high!
Have a great week!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Christmas music

During all my curtain hanging/ Christmas decorating I listened to some Christmas music. It's no secret that I love to listen to music, and sing. I have lots of Christmas favorites, but this one has to be near the top of the list. Click on #5 "A Stable Lamp is Lighted". The text is taken from a poem by Richard Wilbur.

A stable-lamp is lighted
Whose glow shall wake the sky;
The stars shall bend their voices,
And every stone shall cry.

And every stone shall cry,
And straw like gold shall shine;
A barn shall harbor heaven,
A stall become a shrine.

This child through David's city
Shall ride in triumph by;
The palm shall strew it's branches,
And every stone shall cry.

And every stone shall cry,
Though heavy, dull and dumb,
And lie within the roadway
To pave His kingdom come.

Yet He shall be forsaken,
And yielded up to die;
The sky shall groan and darken,
And every stone shall cry.

And every stone shall cry
For stony hearts of men:
God's blood upon the spearhead,
God's love refused again.

But now, as at the ending,
The low is lifted high;
The stars shall bend their voices,
And every stone shall cry.

And every stone shall cry
In praises of the child
By whose descent among us
The worlds are reconciled.

The link above(if it works)is to a version of this that is so lovely. You'll only get to hear a snippet, but it gives me chills every time I hear it.
We're singing a song with these lyrics at midnight Mass this year.

My other all time Christmas favs (in no particular order):
O Come All Ye Faithful
Joy To The World
I Wonder As I Wander--as sung by Vanessa Williams
Gabriel's Message---as sung by Sting
O Holy Night---as sung by Josh Groban
Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas---as sung by Judy Garland (this is probably the saddest Christmas song ever, but I still love it)

So how about you? What are your favorites?

Productive weekend

I had a busy, but productive weekend. Friday, the last 4 windows were installed at my house. This meant I had no more excuses to stall with window treatments (I've had SHEETS taped up to cover windows in my living room/ dinning room), and decorating for Christmas. I found some red shades and curtains at Tarzhay that I hoped would look okay. The only problem was the Target by me only had 2 of the shades. I found the other 2 in NLR. I hung 2 shades and the curtains on Saturday. I might have used some inappropriate language when I was trying to figure out how to get everything up, and have it be level... Sunday I hung the final 2 shades. Those went relatively quickly now that I had it down to a science. Gotta love the tape measure and level. Once I got the curtains up, I couldn't procrastinate with my Christmas decorations any more. Here are a couple views. I think I'm really liking the red curtains/ shades.

The added bonus with the red curtains/ shades is that maybe it won't look so bare when I take down my Christmas decorations.
Next project: Christmas cards---I don't even have a design thought up yet!
Hope all of you have a great week! Happy birthday to Lynnetta-butta-kid!