Monday, December 29, 2008

Last Journal Challenge of 2008!!!!!

Attention my little band of faithful journalers! Here is the very last challenge of the year.  I hope we can convince a few more readers to join in the fun! You don't have to do every challenge or be able to get it done in a week. Feel free to drop in and do any of the challenges that appeal to you!
Last week's theme was I BELIEVE... and I posted my page here.  Does anyone else want to share?
This week I propose a SELF-PORTRAIT journal page.  I went with this idea because I got a very cool book for Christmas titled, Mixed-Media Self-Portraits Inspiration and Techniques by Cate Coulacos Prato.  I spent Christmas Day doing some of the exercises.  You can approach this theme any way you want to.  Make a realistic self-portrait, a stylized self-portrait, an "inner you" self-portrait, alter a photo by drawing or painting on it, do a digitally enhanced self-portrait.  Many people have trouble using themselves as a subject because we are so conditioned to be hyper-critical of our faces, bodies, etc.  Therefore, I challenge you to jump in and fearlessly make a journal page that somehow represents YOU as you are right now, or as you see yourself, or make yourself over into your artistic vision of yourself!

Snapshots of Christmas

Here's a peek into my house  all decorated for the holiday season.  I thought I'd share before I have to pack it all away again!  The first photo is my new snowfamily I got the day AFTER Christmas because it was such a good deal and they were so quirky and cute!

Here's a close-up of my tree, I was trying to go for a subtle Dr. Suess theme. But, no one else in my family "got" my theme idea, even though they all said they liked the tree.  Maybe I need a striped Cat in The Hat Topper next year.  
I love how my altered ice-skates look hanging at the end of the bannister!  I forgot to rotate this photo, so you'll have to tip your head, sorry!

I promised I would post a pic of my packing tape sculpture all lit up for the holidays! It WAS a conversation piece, but I think many family members and friends thought I was very strange to wrap myself in tape, cut it off and tape it all back together.  Oh well, everybody has to have a hobby, right? 
Here is my little kitchen island and you can see my Santas up on top of the cabinets.

And, finally a larger shot of the tree.  I really like it and it still reminds ME of Dr. Suess!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Goody-Goody Who gets the goodie packages????

Thank you so much for sharing your treasured holiday memories with me! My son, Weston, drew the names for me and the winners are...
Diane,  Joanne Huffman, Megan, and Elena !!!!  I will be sending the amazing ATC goodie packages to all of you. I am wishing everyone a very joyous holiday filled with love, laughter, and  some good old-fashioned drama thrown in for fun!  My wonderful friend Peggy gave me a blog award and I will post it tomorrow.  I am hosting Christmas Eve for my family and am having a party Saturday night.  I will be sure to take pictures and blog about the exciting days ahead!  Have yourself a merry little Christmas and let your heart be light!

Monday, December 22, 2008

What I Believe...

Here are my journal pages about my childhood Christmas traditions.
It was so fun to go through my old photos and chronicle the holiday images that stand out as special.  I love the matching robes my mom made us and the photo of 6 year old me sitting on the floor surrounded by
recently ripped off wrapping paper!
No matter how we were struggling financially, my mom always worked hard to make Christmas magical for us!  As I read through the comments people have shared about their family traditions and childhood memories I was struck by how often it is the little things we remember and cherish the most.  The sights, the smells, the tastes that mean Christmas to us.  I think it's wonderful that so many families are continuing these special traditions with their children and grandchildren.  If any true blue diehard journalers will actually get to a new journal page this week I have a new topic.  In honor of the holiday season I think the topic WHAT I BELIEVE... is appropriate.  
These pages can reflect any kind of beliefs that are important to you.
A reading workbook page I was doing with my students today had the title, I Believe in Art.  I stopped and told my students that I DID believe in art and we were lucky that we can still do art and music in our school.  So I am sure my pages will have something to do with what I believe about educating children and how art enriches us as people and as a society.  Remember to leave a comment to have a chance to win one of 4 great ATC goodie packages. I will draw Tuesday Dec. 23 at 8:00 P.M. California time.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Visions of Sugarplums...

Do baby Santa suits EVER go out of style? These photos of my younger sister and I just crack me up! I am 18 months old and I look a little dazed by the whole Christmas experience!
I do remember the silver tinsel that my grandma and my mom loved to hang on the tree.  When we were a little older we liked to walk around on the carpet shocking each other.
I guess we were just electrified by the Christmas spirit!

I hope we have some more comments about favorite childhood holiday memories. I will draw the names for the ATC goodie packages Tuesday evening December 23rd.  I have really enjoyed reading about the different traditions and special memories that made  lasting impressions.  My family always enjoyed singing Christmas carols together.  I learned many Christmas songs in school and sang in holiday concerts.  I have my students perform a gingerbread themed show every December and I teach them several holiday songs.  They absolutely love it and want to practice all the time.   Unfortunately many classrooms are not allowed to sing with children at all! So we need to take the time to teach our children and grandchildren the songs we love or they will not be passed on.  I  even force my teenage son to listen to the radio station that plays Christmas songs all month long whenever he's in the car with me! Hahahaha( Can you hear my evil little laugh?) Well I think that preserving a treasured tradition is well worth a little 14 year-old eye-rolling don't you? 

Friday, December 19, 2008

Altered Ice Skates

Here is my latest holiday project.
My friend Barb, from Wisconsin,
found these way cool vintage ice-skates and sent them to me. They are from the 50's and have a plaid flannel lining and the fake fur trim.  I wanted to art them up and hang them from the end of my bannister for Christmas. When I googled vintage ice-skaters I found these wonderful photos of Ann Boykin Thomas on Flickr. I e-mailed her son and asked if I could use them for this project. He graciously said yes and added that his mom would have loved the idea!  She was a skater in New York in the early 1950's.

These ended up more streamlined than I had originally planned.  After adhering the photo, I added the ribbon laces, the white pop-poms, red rick-rack and the big bell. I wanted a retro feel but I didn't want to overpower the images.  I feel very proud that I finished this project and am able to include them in my decorating this year! Thanks Barb, Bill, and of course, I thank Ann for being such a beautiful ice-skater and inspiring me. I'd love to hear what you think!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

The Princess of Procrastination ..

I could have done my goddess page with that title, it's up for grabs if anyone else fits that particular bill.  When I scanned my journal pages for the previous post, the spread was done in a vertical format and the middle got cropped out. So, here is the middle that ties the two pages together ( in my mind at least).
It's my hands holding scissors and a paintbrush. The bottom page is a skirt filled with all the distractions I have to bounce between trying to balance my must-dos with my want-tos.  The lines vibrating out from my hands are all the ideas fighting to be brought to fruition.  My hands are always happier when they are cutting, folding, gluing, stitching, drawing, painting, or just plain doodling!   

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Count Your Blessings page 2

Here is the second page of my journal on last week's theme.  The bottom photo of my "art posse" got cut off because my journal is a little larger than my scanner bed. I posted this photo in an earlier post- if you want to see it  you can click on the words- lost photo!

Monday, December 1, 2008

Better Late than Never !!! This week's Theme...

I started back to work today after a month off and I am pooped!  I knew I would have to post the weekly journal theme late so I've been thinking and thinking about this one.  Since we've had some serious, thoughtful themes and since this is a month a lot of us do and do and DO for others I think it's time we INDULGE ourselves!!!!  I challenge all of my fellow journalers and yes, even those of you who have not taken the plunge yet!  This week embrace your inner DIVA,  your GODDESS, your supreme, royal, fabulous, uniquely YOU!!! Design a page or two to honor the part of yourself that reigns over whatever it is YOU reign over! I want to see you as a DIVA, Goddess, queen or princesse and what IS it that you are the BEST at, what do you RULE ? Celebrate what makes you ROCK !!!  Of course, me, being the one who always thinks in pictures, I will SHOW you my inner DIVA and I want to SEE yours. But some of us prefer to TELL and DESCRIBE and we can READ about it. Come on people, I want to see crowns, capes, castles, shields, wands, and whatever power symbols you come up with to illustrate your vision of your awesomeness!!! 
I am posting photos of last week's theme from my journal. Even when I'm counting my blessings I have to do it in PICTURES!!!  Have fun and please share what you create!