Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Creative Gift Wrapping Ideas

Laurie at has shared some great gift wrapping ideas!  Check them out:

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Free Christmas Images from Lisa Vollrath

I always enjoy the wonderful free images that Lisa Vollrath shares:

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Wonderful Family Thanksgiving!!

It just doesn't get any better than this! Most of our family was together here at Panama City Beach, FL, at Daddy's beach house for our Thanksgiving celebration on the Saturday after Turkey Day. Daddy smoked turkeys and ham, Teresa made Mother's wonderful Cornbread Dressing and
Gravy and Pecan Pie, I made my Green Rice Casserole and Stuffed Celery and Hot Apple Cider , Debbie made Sweet Potato Casserole, Bobby's Slaw, and Corn Casserole. Nicole made Hash Brown Casserole and Brent did the Crescent Rolls. Brandi fixed Green Beans. Brannon made a wonderful Pumpkin Trifle. As usual, Bobby sliced all of the meat. Charlie, Bobby and the kids set up the tables and chairs on the deck. We followed our usual tradition of giving each other Christmas tree ornaments/gifties. Then Daddy presented each of us with VERY generous monetary gifts after we ate, a tradition he and Mother started many years ago. The weather was beautiful, the love was all around, and the day was perfect!!

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!!

I really enjoy Christine Kane's music and writings. I like what she writes about gratitude - I thought I would share her article:

Why Gratitude Makes You Happy and Wealthy

by Christine Kane

Gratitude is more than being thankful one day a year. Gratitude is a practice. For some, it's a way of life.

Why do some people swear by the practice of gratitude? Why do these people have joy-filled and abundant lives?

In other words, why does gratitude make you happy and wealthy?

• Because gratitude is about presence.

It's about waking up in this moment and being here - really being here - and noticing what's around you. Most people are so busy thinking about the next thing, or about their horrid past, that they don't wake up and look around at their present moment - the only moment there is.

• Because gratitude is about honoring YOUR precious life.

Do you ever compare your life with someone else's? Do you ever wish your life were better and more like [insert famous person's name here]? Sometimes we can lose ourselves in wondering how we "measure up" to some standard set by our families or by the media. Comparison is the mind killer. The antidote is gratitude.

Gratitude requires that you validate your own life. (And you really don't have any other life, do
you?) It forces you to say YES to the gift that is you. The choices you've made and the changes you've gone through - they have brought you here. Even if here is a place that needs a little adjustment, that's okay. There are always gifts in any present moment.

• Because gratitude is about attracting.

It's difficult to attract abundance and joy if you are constantly saying "no" to what IS. You say "no" each time you focus on the future or past, or when you criticize something that is in your present moment.

Attraction is about saying Yes. When you say Yes, you shift.

Gratitude says, "Yes, I love this!" And then more of this is attracted, because the this is what you're focusing on.

• Because gratitude is about choice.

How you translate any situation is the situation. What you choose to see is the truth (for you).

This isn't proposing that you live in denial or phoniness. It's reminding you that your translation of any life situation is your choice. We've all heard stories of people who have ignored others' translations of their talent, their projects, their art, their looks, their lives. These people chose their own translations and succeeded. You always have a choice when it comes to how you look at things. Choose to choose gratitude.

• Because gratitude is about wisdom.

I think people believe they're being smart if they criticize, complain, and focus on the problems of the world around them.

Smart? Maybe.

Clever? Sure.

But not wise.

It is wise to look for and find the knowing place in your heart. It is wise to choose joy. It is wise to honor your riches. It is wise to focus on and grow the blessings of your life.

• Because gratitude is about recognition.

Use your power of focus to hone in on beauty and on what makes your heart sing. Recognize the spirit in your life. It's all around you waiting to be noticed. In the words of Franz Kafka, "It will roll in ecstasy at your feet."

• Because gratitude is about receptivity.

Gratitude makes you receptive. It makes you a vessel, waiting to be filled.

I carry a tiny notebook with me everywhere I go. In it, I write down song ideas. I write down quotes I hear. I write down ideas for stage stories. As I do that, I become more receptive, and more ideas and songs come to me. It's a tool that says to my subconscious, "Send more my way!" And the subconscious always responds.

Gratitude is the same way. It says, "I am receptive! Send more!" And more arrives.

• Because gratitude is about creativity.

Creativity is really all about attention. (So is genius.)

When I write a song, I build a relationship with that song. I spend time with it. I get to know it. I pay attention to it. Artists do the same thing with drawings. They spend time in rapt attention, and the drawing is born.

Gratitude is how we Live Creative. It is a creative act to notice and pay attention to the moments of your life. Some days it's an enormous act of creativity to find things for which to be thankful.

Start today.

And have a Thanksgiving of presence, creativity, and gratitude!

Performer, songwriter, and creativity consultant Christine Kane publishes her 'LiveCreative' weekly ezine with more than 8,000 subscribers. If you want to be the artist of your life and create authentic and lasting success, you can sign up for a FRE*E subscription to LiveCreative at

Monday, November 16, 2009

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Thank a Vet!!

We owe our Veterans so much - let's show our gratitude!!

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Happy Halloween!

Wow! The day got here so quickly! I had a few things more things that I wanted to share even though they are probably too late for this Halloween. Wishing everyone a fun Halloween!!

Last Minute Quick Stuff from Swell Designer.

Martha's Stuffed Skeleton

Crafty Chica's Stuffed Skeleton

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Free Halloween Images

Free Halloween Book to Download and Print

Print this free ebook for Halloween fun and crafts!

Make your own Face Paint

Homemade Halloween Face Paint
By: Allrecipes Staff
Learn how to make face paint with edible items you probably already have!
Edible Makeup
Basic Foundation
· 10 teaspoons (3 Tablespoons + 1 tsp.) cornstarch
· 2 teaspoons white flour
· 5 teaspoons vegetable shortening
· 1/8 teaspoon food coloring or fresh juices
· 1/4 teaspoon glycerin (available at cake decorating and craft stores)
1. In a small bowl, combine cornstarch and flour. Stir in vegetable shortening. Add any food coloring you would like. Stir in the glycerin; mixing until well combined.2. Use your fingers or a makeup sponge to apply face paint. Use small brushes or your fingertips for detailed designs.
Warts, Scabs and Road Rash
Basic Goop Recipe:
· 1 ounce gelatin (plain or flavored, depending on desired color)
· 2 tablespoons boiling water
· Mix-ins as needed: couscous, paprika, colored sugar
· 4 tablespoons corn syrup
In a small bowl or cup combine gelatin and water. Mix and let set 3 minutes. It's now time to begin experimenting with the gelatin. There are a variety of techniques that can be used to create special makeup effects:
· Warts, blisters, and general skin growths: Before the gelatin sets completely, make moles or blisters by dripping the liquid gelatin onto a ceramic plate and letting it set completely. When set, carefully peel the formations off of the plate. Stick them onto your child's body and face by using a drop of corn syrup as adhesive.
· Apply color to growths, make additional growths and make convincing-looking blood: Use a spoon, popsicle stick, or other makeup applicators (including your hands) to apply the partially-set gelatin to your child's body and face. The gelatin will drip or clot depending on the degree of set it has reached. If the gelatin sets before you're ready, reheat it briefly in the top of a double-boiler or in a microwave for approximately 10 seconds on high until it thins out and the process begins again. Use a spoon to drip semi-liquid red gelatin over scars, scabs or out of wounds. After 3 to 5 minutes, the gelatin will set in very realistic-looking drips. If the gelatin doesn't set, let it sit another minute and try again.
· Other gooey, slimy, stretchy effects: Let the gelatin set about 5 minutes. Stretch or grab gobs of the almost-set gelatin and string it or glop it as you desire. Attach to skin with corn syrup.
· Add texture to the makeup. Stirring in mix-ins adds texture to the effects. Sprinkling colored sugar into the unset gelatin will make grainy textured effects, while sprinkling couscous or paprika on top of the globs once they've begun to set will make some wounds look scabbed over.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

More Fun Food

Ghastly Grins from

Candy Corn Sugar Cookies from Little Birdie Secrets

Moon Pie fun from

More Halloween Stuff

This isn't really a Halloween site but it's one of my favorite "creepy" sites. Make sure you hover your mouse over each graveyard image - some will make you jump! There are 4 seasons of beautiful, eerie cemetery photos here by Jonathan Clark! Click on the SEASON and then click on each cross to view each photo.

How about some Halloween Ghost Stories to get into the Halloween spirit?!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Fun Halloween Food and Drinks

I have gathered several fun Halloween recipes and wanted to share them here. Also, there is a FREE ecookbook for you to download. Enjoy!

Caramel Apple Martini
By: Van Gogh Vodka

Don't you just love caramel apples? Halloween just wouldn't be the same without them. Now there's a delicious drink recipe that will take you back to your childhood - it captures the flavor of those yummy caramel apples, but is for adults only!

Serves 1
1 1/2 ounce apple cider or juice
1 1/2 ounce Van Gogh Wild Appel Vodka
1/2 ounce Van Gogh Dutch Caramel Vodka
1/2 ounce apple schnapps
caramel syrup
apple slice (round), seeds removed
Glaze the inside of a chilled martini glass with caramel syrup and place glass in the refrigerator until ready to use.
Add all ingredients into a shaker with ice and shake vigorously.
Strain into chilled glass glazed with caramel syrup.
Float a thinly sliced apple round (seeds removed) on top.
(I got this recipe from
Creepy Stuffed Eggs
Decorate your favorite stuffed eggs with black olives that are cut to look like spiders:

Or here's another stuffed egg recipe. If you like deviled eggs, you'll love these deviled eyeballs. This is one of those fun Halloween recipe ideas that's easy to make, tastes great, and looks terrific on your Halloween food table. You can adjust the amounts as desired-- this is a very flexible recipe, and you can add pretty much whatever you like.

Ingredients:12 hard boiled eggs1/2 C. mayonnaise or Miracle Whip2 green onions, finely minced1 tsp. dried parsley flakes1/2 tsp. dry ground mustard1/4 tsp. salt1/4 tsp. paprika1/4 tsp. garlic powderblue food coloring, as neededred paste food coloring, as needed24 slices of black olivespimentos or fresh red peppers
Instructions: 1. Peel the hard boiled eggs and slice in half lengthwise. Scoop the yolks out into a medium bowl and reserve the whites until needed.
2. With the back of a fork, mash the yolks until smooth.
3. Add mayo, onions, parsley, mustard, salt, paprika, and garlic powder. Mix well.
4. Add a few drops of blue food coloring to turn the yellow mixture a soft green.
5. Spoon green yolk mixture into the cavity in each white half, dividing evenly.
5. On top of each yolk filling, place one black olive slice. Add a small piece of pimento or red pepper for the pupil.
6. With a toothpick dipped in red food coloring paste, draw red veins on egg white's surface.
7. Cover and chill until ready to serve.

Severed Bloody Fingers

Heat Lil' Smokie cocktail sausages in your favorite BBQ sauce. Remove and drain. Wrap each sausage with a strip cut from a flour tortilla (to resemble bandage). Cut a small niche out of the tip and fill with mustard. Serve on a plate drizzled with the BBQ sauce.

These Vampire Cookies look fun and tasty!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Halloween Altered Art Diva Tea Party!

Some of my friends and I are having a Halloween "Altered Art Diva Tea Party". Please link to my friend Angela's blog here - there you will find her fantastic home decorations plus other fun stuff AND a list of the other Diva Bloggers participating in this fun Halloween Blog Party:
Angela's Blog

I hope to share all kinds of fun Halloween stuff between now and Halloween.

First, some fun decorated pumpkins!
I love this Vintage Pumpkin Tutorial by Jodi Reeves:

And this fun pumpkin "family" from Craftzine

Fun "Altered Pumpkins" from "Country Home" magazine a couple of years ago:

Some fun free paper dolls from Dover: