Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Happy .... EASTER! LOL :/

So, I tried an interesting technique for dying eggs this year but it didn't turn out like I wanted so .... I was pouting about it... and wasn't going to blog about it! Waah.  LOL

But a friend (you know who you are and I thank you!) encouraged me to post the results so here they are!!

Have you heard about dying Easter Eggs with natural things like red onion skins??  Well, on Facebook, I saw a great idea on how to add to that so I thought I'd try it!  And, as usual, I of course wanted to put my own little twist on the idea :)  In the FB post, they showed how to lay a leaf or flower on the egg then secure it with a piece of panty hose then after the egg is dyed, take off the panty hose and leaf and you have the imprint of the leaf where they dye couldn't go!  Awesome, huh?  OK, I can't wait and you might not want to either so, instead of reading a whole bunch before you see how it turned out, here is the end result!  Then I'll tell you how I got there :)

So, I went to the store to get supplies.  There is a fun little bargain store about a mile from my house that usually has whatever crafty type supplies I'm looking for.  The first item - panty hose.  (I did have some of my Gram's old panty hose here but.... erm.... no....)  Well, they didn't have any panty hose in the store!!  Ahh!  So, I turned on my "resourceful/plan B/won't stop 'til I get it" part of my brain and started roaming the aisles.  And I found quite an interesting replacement right in the Easter aisle!

It's a mesh bag to cover Easter Baskets!  I also found rubber bands that looked like they might be interesting.  See, here's a key to doing creative stuff -- let your mind wander and try to see things in a different way and try to "explore all options and possibilities" (If my kids are reading that they're probably rolling their eyes because I've said that a billion and two times LOL)  And I also needed the rubber bands to hold the mesh on the egg.  You can also see, in the pic, the choices for plants.  A few came from my houseplants and a few came from outside.  

So, the next step is getting the plant on to the egg!  I kinda sorta measured :) and cut the mesh into squares:

Then I put the egg on top of the plant and carefully gathered the mesh and wrapped it around the egg.  This may take a few tries - the picture below was not my first attempt LOL:

Then I secured the ends with a rubber band and kind of gathered the loose ends with each twist of the rubber band:

OK, that part is done!  Whew!  Now..... what other fun things can we do???

YYyeeaaahhhh..... Looks easy enough right??  LOL  Put on some music and breath deep and just keep working on it.  Rubber bands are snappy little things that don't always stay where you want them to but, as you can see in the final result picture, it did work :)  Once again, these were not my first attempts.  And in the next picture, you get to benefit from something that makes reading blogs and watching other people do something very useful --- You get to learn from my experience!  And my experience is --- don't do this LOL:

 Sure, a spotted egg would be cool and all ... but how do we then get the spots of wax OFF the eggs???  Not as easy as you might think :) it ended up not being worth the effort.  Lesson learned.  Possibility explored.  :)

And now it's time for coloring!!:

 So, once again, I thought I'd see what fun things I have around my kitchen to use for dye!  Of course I used red onions.  I always have them in my kitchen :) And I had just gotten some yummy grapes that looked like they could be a fun color.  And can you guess what the orange substance is???  OK, I'll tell ya LOL.  It's canned pumpkin!  Why not try it, I thought???  As you can see in the final result pic, there are no orange or yellow eggs.  Only brown from the onions and lavender from the grapes :)  So one more thing you don't have to try and get bad results!  You're welcome!! :)

Oh - add about a tablespoon of white vinegar to each pot.  That helps the dye stick to the eggs.

Also - as you can see from the pic, I left the foods in the pans.  It seemed like it would help get the colors even darker:

I left the eggs in here all day!  I wanted to see how dark the color could get.  And as you can see from the final results, the colors are pretty cool!  Here's the pic again:

So, to explain a few things - the one second from the left is done by writing on the egg with a crayon.  It's a little messy but it was kind of a last minute thought/experiment.  You can see the eggs made with the rubber bands.  I was pretty pleased with those!  The two 'artsy' looking ones are the best of the eggs that leaves were attached to.  I didn't think about the lines from the mesh bag showing up but it's a pretty cool effect!  I think with the panty hose, the leaf would have been more firmly on the egg and it would have been a clearer leaf shape but this looks pretty nice.  I think it's more 'my kind of egg' than if it were all clean and precise :)

And something interesting about the eggs from the grapes - they had a 'substance' on them - something gritty from the grapes.  It wasn't horrible but it ... felt weird.... LOL

Monday, December 24, 2012

A Crafty Christmas - Craftinator Style!!

It's been too LONG!!  So Sorry!!

Over a year since my last post??  F'reals??

Hopefully that will change :)

Well, Christmas = CRAFTING FRENZY at the House of Craftinator!!  I have to show you and tell you about one of my funnest projects!  My grandson, Kaden (must show a picture, of course) ....

has wanted a 'Dream Lite' ladybug forEVER so I was shopping around for one and was at Michaels with my coupons in hand :)  I found Dream Lites but there was no lady bug.  Only puppydogs and unicorns.  Boo.  They were ...  $27 I think so I kept it in mind but thought maybe I should look at a different store.  I wandered around Michaels looking for other things on my list and found a display of Discovery Kids Toys.  And what do I find???  A Firefly!!  And it's RED!!

AND IT'S ON SALE!!!  So, my brain-gears start turning...  This sure does look enough like a ladybug that I'm sure I can MAKE it be a ladybug!!  I wonder if anyone could see smoke coming out of my ears.  Ha.

Well, then I look at the price.  Oh. Mah.  Goo'ness.  It is originally THIRTY DOLLARS.  Yikes.  BUT IT'S ON SALE!!  For $9.99!!!  No Way!  Woot!  heehee.  And what was it I mentioned earlier??  Oh yes - COUPONS!!  I had a 50% off coupon AAANND a coupon for 20% off my total purchase!!  This is a Crafter's Nirvana Friendinators!!   What.  A.  Score.

Craftinator wins!!  


So, then the creative process begins...  What to do, How to do it...  I should have taken pics of the first few prototypes but that would have taken time and would have broken my concentration!  After I took off the weird looking little legs and wings, I found a black chenille sweater in my sweater stash and got out my Sharpie Markers (LOVE my Sharpies) and....



Heehee.  Giggle.  Snort!!  I can't wait to see him open it!!

OK - BONUS PICTURE TIME!  Here are two other Christmas Crafts I made for my boys!  

I asked Kaden - OK, I make Owls and Dragons and Mice -- If I were going to make an animal for you, what would you like?  Kaden's answer....

A robot....  Hahaha!   That kid is so cool.

And for my newest grandbaby, Liam...

A Monkey!!!

And, what does the Craftinator's Couch look like after such a frenzy???  (I usually don't show such pictures but even I was fascinated LOL)

And this was not staged, people.  I walked into the living room and this is what I saw.  LOL

So, here's wishing a wonderful Holiday Season to you all!  Go hug your family and friends and eat cookies!!!  :)


Thursday, August 4, 2011

Priority Lists....P'shaw....

Sometimes you can make all the lists you want, sometimes the list is made for you...

I was going to do it!  Really I was!  "I'm going to fix the steps and sidewalk 'Some time this Summer'"

  "Sometime this Summer" was decided for me when I got a note in the mail - - 

"Dear Person who lives in this really old house (Ok, I'm using my own words ... but...),

Your sidewalk and the steps to your house are ugly and I don't want to walk on them any more, they make me sad."

Nahhhh... not really LOL  Actually, it was more like this -

"Your steps and sidewalk are a hazard and are dangerous to my job.  Please fix them within two weeks or I will be unable to deliver your mail.  Signed, your Postal Carrier"

Reasonable.  And he was right.  ***Sigh***  I kinda wanted to find him and say - I was gonna do it, really I was!  Sometime this Summer!  F'reals!  But I decided I needed to find my validation in other places besides the wandering letter bearer so I left him alone.  I'm sure he would thank me.

So, I'm pretty sure I got the note about 1 week and 5 days ago :)  Last night was cement repair night!  Woot!  I've decided that I'm going to step things up and, if I do a repair, make it fun and my own!  Well, at least as much as reasonably possible considering time and money constraints.  I decided not to embellish the steps since I wasn't sure if it was a good idea to be too decorative with something that needed to be sturdy and safe so there are no pictures of the repaired steps - they would just be boring :)

But - here are the patches in the sidewalk!!!

Cool, huh???  I'm pretty pleased.  I wanted to do more on the big spot but I bought quick drying cement....'nuff said....

I have had these scrap pieces of stained glass hanging around my garage for at least 5 years!!  I couldn't figure out what to do with them but I knew someday they'd come in handy :)

So, I get to cross this off my "Some time this Summer" List!  Woot!

If you have a "Some time this Summer" List, there's not much Summer left ya know :)

Wednesday, July 27, 2011


Time is an interesting thing - the concept of time, the passing of time, being short on time, having too much time.  All very interesting.

I'm becoming more and more aware of my lack of understanding of how much time it really takes to do anything - like chores or crafts.  I'm attempting to estimate how much time something takes to accomplish and then see how close to my estimate I can come.  Sometimes - ok, most of the time :) I'm way off.
I'm not sure where this comes from but I think it has to do with the way my brain is wired.  But that doesn't mean it's a deficiency, it just means different.  So, my plan is to acknowledge it, factor it in to the mix and modify what I do to fit my particular brain :)

So, the other day I was finding something fun to wear and found my really cool "Hippie" necklace 
Then I realized - heyyyy - I have no cool Hippie Earrings to go with this!!  I pouted for half a second then decided to stop whinin' and solve my problem!  I started to make a list of options in my head and decided I wanted to make some.  I was trying to get some errands done so I wanted to get out the door but my girlie side was saying "Earrings! Must have cute Earrings!"  heehee.  So, I realized this could be a good opportunity to work on my time issue.  So, I thought - hm... let's see how long it would take me to make some earrings - I already had all the pieces and parts and tools needed sitting on my work table because I had just made some Wine Bottle Candelabras (See previous post).  So, less than half an hour later (Yea, only half an hour!!), I had myself a pair of Hippie earrings made from an old pair of hoops and some beads from my stash!!!

Half an hour!  Coolness!  If I knew it was only going to take half an hour, I woulda made them long ago!

I think it'll be working on this 'problem'.  Who knows all of the fun things I'll make while practicing estimating time :)

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

*** Hic ***

I'm at it again :)

I am having a blast - friends are giving me things that they may have otherwise thrown away because they know I'll be able to make something out of nothing!

So.... if life gives me wine bottles...
....make Candlabras!!  :)

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Ehhhh.....Watcha Gonna Do....

So, 'funny' story.

I had the privilege of being asked to do Cynthia's wedding cake! She calls me "Aunt Michele" and so do her 2 sisters :) Cynthia is the last of the 3 to get married and I made wedding cakes for all 3! How cool is that?? The wedding was yesterday.

So, Christmas day was baking day. Cynthia wanted champagne cake - oh, my word, it is now one of my new wedding cake flavors. It is just totally yummy! Christmas evening was to be frosting making time. As I went to wash the beaters in preparation, I could only find

one beater......

You would think a seasoned cake decorator would have a backup mixer but noooooooo! I called my friend, who I knew was at a friend's house, and asked if they might have a mixer I could borrow.


BUT - my friend said - don't worry, I'll handle it, I'll see you in a bit. Sure enough, she showed up and was able to find a pharmacy open that had one lone mixer left on the shelf! Yay! We opened it up, plugged it in and.......


It didn't work.


So, an adventure ensued. She left to go to another pharmacy in the same chain, so she could return the one she had and get another. We decided to hop on our laptops and cell phones to try to find something open, in the area, at 6pm on CHRISTMAS DAY where we might find a mixer!!! Well, she found one, made them plug it in before she bought it and brought it to me.

Aaaalrighty then - back on track for wedding cake production. I started making frosting and...

can you guess..... ??



Well, I was done. I decided to go to bed early, wake up at 5 and be in the Meijer parking lot to buy a mixer. So, that's what I did. I was in the parking lot at 5:40 so I listened to music and relaxed and kept an eagle eye on the door so I could get in ASAP. Sure enough, there was no unlocking the doors until the big hand hit the 12!

I went in and found the mixers. After drooling over the Kitchen Aid stand mixers for just a moment, I moved my way down to the hand mixers. While silently thanking my mom for the gift card, I found a heavy duty mixer - stainless steel, 16 speeds with digital readout for $30 !


I brought home my new toy and was in 'Go Mode' knowing I had just a few short hours before the wedding. Luckily, I had helpers that were willing to do whatever I asked of them


I flew out the door at 11:20 which was going to be cutting my set up time pretty short - the wedding was at 2! I still had to go to JoAnn's to possibly find some fabric for under the cake stand. Luckily I found some and it was half off!!

I arrived at the church around 12:45 and fervently started setting up. Shortly before 2, I was still working on the cake when everyone went upstairs for the wedding. I could hear the piano playing and then the muffled tones of the pastor. I finally finished and while I was taking pictures of the finished cake, I heard the applause being given after the first kiss! Moments later, the newly married couple breezed into the reception hall to find everything in perfect order!


And here is what they found!