Saturday, February 9, 2008

Mary Shelley and Me

Are any of you like me? You see an old photograph and you wonder: what would that gal look like with her hair down?

All images today are from Dead Fred, a free genealogical site.

So here's the first photo of a lovely wedding party around the turn of the 20th century...

After gazing at the photo, I zero in on the bride. I think what a lovely face, wonder what she'd look like with her hair down. Are you still with me here? So I spend some time finding her some hair and playing games with PAINT so that she now looks like this...

And a side by side...

I am so struck by this next photo of an incredibly nervous young bride and groom. He is so nervous that he's biting his lower lip; she just looks plain scared to pieces and has gathered her skirt slightly with her left hand. I worry about them. Oh well, whatever has happened for them has happened.

Are you still with me? I can't help myself, and by now, you know what I'm wondering. Here's the bride with her hair down in another side by side comparison...

Hmmm, ahhh, wellll, sometimes the hair to the bride doesn't work so well; sometimes the bride must go to the hair...

I've satisfied my curiosity for today. Usually, I limit myself to the virtual painting of rooms or virtual architecture. This feels rather Mary Shelley-ish; I'm creating Frankensteins.

Maybe I'll wander off now and give my grandfather politician hair.

Have a restful Saturday, dear ones!

Friday, February 8, 2008

My Final Two Cents on the Subject of Making a Valentine

This photo was taken early yesterday afternoon right after already having done the transfer when I thought what a marvelous thing it would be to use the sewing machine to attach lace to the edge of the card. Not!

Patience, patience, patience I told myself as I worked hard at not gathering the scraps into a ball and tossing them into the trash as was my earnest desire in the moment. I left to do other chores, spent some time with my calico, called a friend, served coffee to a drop-in guest right in the middle of it. They don't say that "patience is a virtue" without reason. After I'd taken the time and no longer thinking about the disaster, I thought of Zanne; I thought of Zanne and her deconstruct project, which you can read about by clicking on January 31. And I thought that if she had deconstructed a man's shirt and created an apron, I could deconstruct that ruined Valentine.

This is how it turned out in the end. (Stay tuned because I am going to give you the expanded version of The Packing Tape Technique for transferring images.)

This was a learning process and I'd do it much differently next time. The images would be larger, and I'd remember that subtle doesn't always work.

As promised...

The Packing Tape Technique for Transferring Images

You will need:

A photocopied image; clear packing tape; a burnishing tool such as a bone folder or popsicle stick; a shallow dish; tap water; and a dish towel.

1) Make a black and white or color copy of the image, reversing it if necessary to the image when turn out correctly when reversed.

**This MUST be a copy of an actual image not printed from a picture file.

2) Lay a strip of packing tape sticky side down on top of the photocopied image. Use the burnishing tool to go over the image and make sure it has fully adhered to the tape.

**Be extremely thorough with this. Take time and do it carefully and well.

3) Immerse the tape-covered image into a shallow bowl of tap water for up to 15 minutes. Remove the image and pat it dry with the dish towel. Use your fingers to rub off the paper. If you experience difficulty getting the paper to rub off, submerge the tape into the tap water for a few more minutes and repeat the process.

** This took me much longer than 15 minutes. It was more like an hour. Be patient and the reward will float to you on the water. Remove all evidence of paper very carefully by rubbing gently with your fingers.

4) Once the paper has been removed, you will have a transparent image left on the tape. Allow this to dry. Once dried, it can be used in numerous projects, such as scrapbooking, decoupage, jewelry items and altered art projects.

** Important: Once the transferred image is dry, trim it removing all excess tape. The tape itself will not be removed from the project you'll be working on. Since it stays behind, be certain that the image has been trimmed appropriately. On the other hand, this may mean leaving enough tape to cover the entire area that you're working on. (My transferred image has an obvious line of demarcation that is unattractive.)

**My Notes


If any of you try this, I want to hear about it!!

I'd like to thank Rhette (link removed because Rhette has a private blog) for creating the sweet "Vee gif" that I am using in my profile right now. Rhette is new to blogging so drop by one day when you have the chance and say "howdy."

Edited to Add: For additional information, please check out comments today.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Suggestions Anyone?

Maybe it was the Thieves, but for whatever reason, I woke up able to breathe this morning. I'll take it!

Oh that Valentine I spoke of on Tuesday is giving me palpitations. It doesn't take much...;>

Here's what it looks like so far...

BumbleVee, I did what you told me...created myself a little tray that can be whisked off the table in no time.

This is a photo of my grandmother taken in 1914 when she was five. It's so darling that I'd love to incorporate it into the Valentine somehow...

Here's another of Nan taken last summer... Yes, she does look a lot like me!

What I really want to do is to superimpose the child upon the current photo using a transfer technique such as the first one suggested here: *click* There's a wonderful blogger out there somewhere, whom I can't find, who is doing all sorts of wonderful scrapping with this idea. Do you ever lose a blogger? I've lost so many! Of course I keep finding so many that maybe it all balances out in the end.

I had played with the idea of using these maternal grandparents...but I can't figure out how to do it without being too "over the top."

Whatever I decide to do, I'll be certain to share.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Lysol, Thieves, and a Cottage Porch

Warning: Do not enter this blog without Lysol! It's true, I've officially had whatever-it-is for 39 days. It's a frustrating cold/flu because just when it seems that it's on the mend, back it comes again. Must be something that I'm supposed to be learning. Anyway, I know that I am not the only one dealing with whatever-it-is so I'm curious enough to ask if you or someone you know has been likewise sidetracked this winter. Let me know! I'm hoping to submit an entry on helpful tips and comfort recipes.

Okay, on with the real entry...

Isn't this a charming space? This photo comes from an article titled The English Gardener Moves Indoors: An English Cottage in Colorado. It's located on a newsletter called Front Range Living by Niki Hayden. She writes a lot of terrific articles on home and gardening, which you should be able to access by clicking on the link provided above.

A friend called me this morning and hearing my voice decided that I was desperately in need of something called "Thieves" an essential oil made of clove, lemon, cinnamon, rosemary, and eucalyptus. It has just arrived on my door handle (I wouldn't let my friend in) with a story about the Bubonic Plague and gypsies and how gypsies weren't affected by the plague because they used this combination of oils on their feet. The mere mention of "Bubonic Plague" made me laugh. I know this whatever-it-is is baaadddddd, but that bad? Anyway, I'm willing to give anything a try. I'd go to the doctor, but both my mother and grandmother have been on a course of antibiotic and it hasn't done a thing to help.

Stay healthy, everyone!

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

For Tuesday

I Believe

I believe that we don't have to change friends if we understand that friends change.

I believe that no matter how good a friend is, she's going to hurt you every once in a while and you must forgive her for that.

I believe that true friendship continues to grow, even over the longest distance. Same goes for true love.

I believe that you can do something in an instant that will give you a heartache for life.

I believe that it's taking me a long time to become the person I want to be.

I believe that you should always leave loved ones with loving words. It may be the last time you see them.

I believe that you can keep going, long after you can't.

I believe that we are responsible for what we do, no matter how we feel.

I believe that either you control your attitude or it controls you.

I believe that regardless of how hot and steamy a relationship is at first, the passion fades and there had better be something else to take its place.

I believe that heroes are the people who do what has to be done when it needs to be done, regardless of the consequences.

I believe that money is a lousy way of keeping score.

I believe that my best friend and I can do anything or nothing and have the best time.

I believe that sometimes the people you expect to kick you when you're down, will be the ones to help you get back up.

I believe that sometimes when I'm angry I have the right to be angry, but that doesn't give me the right to be cruel.

I believe that just because someone doesn't love you the way you want them to doesn't mean they don't love you with all they have.

I believe that maturity has more to do with what types of experiences you've had and what you've learned from them and less to do with how many birthdays you've celebrated.

I believe that it isn't always enough to be forgiven by others. Sometimes you have to learn to forgive yourself.

I believe that no matter how bad your heart is broken the world doesn't stop for your grief.

I believe that our background and circumstances may have influenced who we are, but we are responsible for who we become.

I believe that just because two people argue, it doesn't mean they don't love each other And just because they don't argue, it doesn't mean they do.

I believe that you shouldn't be so eager to find out a secret. It could change your life forever.

I believe that two people can look at the exact same thing and see something totally different.

I believe that your life can be changed in a matter of hours by people who don't even know you.

I believe that even when you think you have no more to give, when a friend cries out to you you will find the strength to help.

I believe that credentials on the wall do not make you a decent human being.

I believe that the people you care about most in life are taken from you too soon.

And I believe in true friendship, for I believe in you!

Source: Blessings for

Monday, February 4, 2008

Thinking About Valentine's Day

* It's time to think about Valentine's Day. Yes. It is.

Nothing was more magical or lovely than Valentine's Day when I was growing favorite childhood holiday right after Christmas and Easter. I adored the schoolroom projects and the way our heart mobiles floated from the ceiling. Making a Valentine's box was so much joy that my little heart nearly burst with the thrill of it all.

But somewhere along the way I lost my enthusiasm for Valentine's Day. Yup, it became another chore. Maybe I lost the love for glue on my fingers, glitter in my hair, and red construction paper messes. Actually, that is exactly the case now that I'm thinking about it. Lots of things became a chore for me when I no longer enjoyed the mess that they inevitably involved. Wow! A revelation in paragraph three. No wonder I hate to cook. (I can cook. I just don't like it much.)

So you may be surprised to know that I am in the middle of big messes attempting to create the most fantastic Valentine ever for my grandmother. My grandmother is appalled by my lack of delight for such a fantastic holiday. She loves Valentine's Day, has always shopped carefully for the perfect cards, and the perfect treats. One could always count on Nan on February 14!

This new-found urge to create is attributed to all those bloggers who scrap and create art from bits of lace, old buttons, a scrap of paper or two, and imagination. I've had to kick start my imagination, but I'm trying...I'm really trying.

So while the sheet music is soaking in coffee, I'll head off to find some lace, buttons, paper, inspiration, and joy.

* P.S. This vintage Valentine floated down from the rafters last October in the middle of construction.

Sunday, February 3, 2008


Never make a negative decision in the low time. Never make your most important decisions when you are in your worst moods. Wait. Be patient. The storm will pass. The spring will come. ~Robert H. Schuller

Imagine a green valley with storm clouds threatening.

photo source leaving the original photo source as you may enjoy seeing the hiking photos

Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, "This is the way; walk in it." ~ Isaiah 30:21