Kasey Litt

Kasey Litt

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Nine Days -- Whoo hoo!

Tonight I played with My Digital Studio software and made a double page layout that I think is absolutely ADORABLE!!! And of course of my favorite subjects -- my girls (and my dear hubby). I think it is so cool how I can download different stamp sets and embellishments. It's like modernizing traditional scrapbooking! The two pages took me about half an hour to complete. What do you think?

By the way, picture them as a double spread with the first page being on the left and the second page on the right. I can't figure out how to have the pages side by side.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Day 8 (Is it only 8 days since I started?)

So tonight was Book Club night but I was able to duck down into the Craft Pit (as my husband has now dubbed his man pit/my craft studio) to make a quick card for my good friend Cindy. Cindy is an artiste herself and makes beautiful jewelry. One day I admired some lemon drop earrings on her blog (www.lottiebird.blogspot.com) and the next day I had a beautifully wrapped little box of joy! So I wanted to make her a special card to show her my appreciation.

I used the new Sweet Pea designer paper and the Of the Earth stamp and of course my favorite Top Note exclusive Sizzix die. I love how this came out.

On the flower stamp I used the Stampin' Up markers and colored in the stamp and then spritzed it with a fine mist of water and then stamped it on Whisper White paper. To make it pop on the front, I used SU Dimensionals which are two sided adhesives that are little pieces of foam to make things pop out. I love the color of the paper and it reminds me of Cindy because her dining room is very close to this shade of blue.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Sunday is writing day

So today I'm posting some of my writing. I am taking an online class on writing a Young Adult novel. Let me set up my story for you...

15-year old Kaylee Rich loves her family, loves the Goo Goo Dolls and loves animals, in particular dogs. Kaylee's mom, Kathryn turned her onto the Goo Goo Dolls and they've been to several concerts. Something is odd with the way her mom reacts to the lead singer, Johnny Resnick. Kaylee believes that she "knows" Johnny from the way she reacts to his songs.

One day while she's volunteering at the animal shelter, an animal control officer brings in a large male pit bull who is immediately sentenced to death just because he is a pit bull. The town she lives in has passed an anti-breed law against pit bulls and they are all to be destroyed. Kaylee takes the dog from the shelter so it doesn't get killed and runs away across country to find Johnny Resnick so she can give him this dog.

So here is my latest exercise for class and my creative endeavor for the day!

When the animal control officer brought Fred into the shelter, you would have thought that the dog was rabid. The officer had suited up wearing his protective dog gear that sort of made him look like a dirty Michelin Man. He stormed into the kennel area of the shelter dragging this pitiful looking dog. He was white and beige – not brown or golden like a retriever but sort of like the color of a deer. The dog did not want to be here and was whining and wimpering. Officer Stark was pulling him on one of those long aluminum poles with the noose on the end.

“I just finished cleaning 412 Officer Starke,” I yelled over to him. The kennel had erupted in a cacophony of barks and howls. I looked over at the poor dog and saw that he was shaking in fear.

“This one’s going in the back Kaylee. NOT FOR ADOPTION.” He ran his finger under his chin across his throat.

I watched him drag the dog across the kennel to the back room. We volunteers weren’t allowed in the backroom. It had some kennels and the area where the euthanasia was performed. I felt a lump form in my throat.

“Why? What did he do?” I yelled to Stark. I followed him to the back, forbidden area. “Tell me. What did the dog do?”

The dog looked at me and I saw his tail relax a little, maybe even wag a little. I stood with my hands on my hips waiting for Trask to answer.

“He didn’t do nothing. He’s a pit bull. We have a policy. Owner turned him over. But by the looks of him it don’t look like the owner cared for him anyway. This is the best for him.”

“You’re going to kill this dog? For nothing?” I could hear my voice thin out. I was close to screeching. Red was washing into my view and I could feel the heat flushing my skin.

“It’s the law. City Council passed it last year. Pit bulls are banned in this town. “

“Well, I’ll take him to another town. Look at him – he’s terrified, Starke. Can you at least take him off the pole?”

“Come on Kaylee. He’s a dangerous animal. You just leave him be.” Starke pushed open the door with his butt and pulled the dog inside the dark room. I tried to follow them in but he slammed the door shut. I jimmied the knob – it was one of those automatic locking doors.

In a few minutes, Starke emerged from the room with the pole on his shoulder. My eyes welled up with hot tears. “Is it done? Did you kill him?”

Starke shook his head. “Have to wait ‘til Thursday. That’s the day we take ‘em.”

Exercise 2

I got to the shelter early on Sunday morning. In the parking lot, I noticed that Officer Starke’s pickup was in the employee parking lot. I was hoping that he was off today. After our run in yesterday, I don’t think I am his favorite person. I know he’s not mine.

As I was pushing the back employee entrance door open, Officer Starke was coming out. “Hey Kaylee – you here again today?”

I nodded my head to him and ducked through the door. I turned back to Officer Starke and forced myself to tell him to have a nice day.

As I walked through the kennels, the dogs came to the front of their cages and barked to get my attention. “Just a minute guys…I’ll be right back,” I called to them as I made my way to the front office.

Pearl was manning the front desk today. “Hey Sugar, what’s shaking?” She handed me the sign-in clipboard.

“Pearl-what’s up with that pit bull Officer Starke brought in yesterday?” I asked her trying to sound nonchalant about it.

“You talking about that big-headed boy? Fawn and white?” she asked.

I nodded my head and pulled up another office chair. I was ready to hear a tragic story. “Well, there’s not much to tell. The owners brought him in about 2:00 yesterday afternoon. It was a normal surrender.”

I had to scramble to pick my jaw up off the floor. From the way Starke had treated that dog, I was sure he must have killed something or someone.

“Pearl is there any way I can go see him?” I asked her as sweetly as I could. I knew Pearl had a soft spot for all the animals here. “He just seemed so scared and confused yesterday.”

Pearl leaned in toward her like she had a big secret. “Sugar I AM not supposed to let volunteers back there but I’ve been sneaking in to see Fred all day myself. He is one sweetheart of a dog. If Starke finds you in there though, I know nothing.” She slipped me her keys . “Oh, and here – he really likes these.” She handed me a Ziploc baggie full of freeze-dried liver treats.

Days 5 and 6

I had a rare night alone and at home on Friday night (2/5). I went down to the man-pit/craft studio (Andy is not at all pleased that I have infiltrated his manpit with girlyness). It is a great area to be able to spread out and be able to work on different things. I held my workshop down there and now I want to move the plans for the craft room down there...at least utilize the storage space so I can store everything down there and take what I need depending on what I'm working on. I could actually have a place to set up my sewing machine always and my Cricut and Your Story. And a place where I could see all my stamps and supplies!I will continue to work down there until I'm thrown out.

But on this Friday night the dogs played away while I did some watercolor marker experiments using the Stampin' Up Circle Circus set. I stamped one of the larger stamps in black, heat embossed (using Stampin' Up black embossing powder). Once it was embossed I colored in the parts. Then I used Crystal Dimensions over the top and now it looks like an epoxy brad. Brad...hmmm perhaps I will make a brad. Good idea!!!

I was playing with different card lay outs and techniques I have learned from my upline, Mandy using colors and layers, ribbons and embellishments. My friend Tiffany's grandmother passed away so I wanted to make a Sympathy card for her. I really like this card. It's pretty and a bit understated but also has some pizzaz. Maybe a little too much pizzaz??? I chose red, white and black as my colors. First, I took a 3/4" strip of white cardstock and using the scallop border punch, made a sort of lacey edge. Next I put the strip through the crimper tool. Once the strip was crimped, I took my black ink pad and wiped it across the strip. This made it look like black stripes on paper. I used a heart punch out that I had laying around and put strips of Sticky Strip across the heart punch out and then using the 2-way "blue glue" I stuck it down (sticky strip side up)on the card. Next I peeled off the adhesive backing of the Sticky Strip so my heart was ready to work with. Taking one end of the crimped, punched, colored paper strip, I firmly placed it on the outline of the heart punch and secured it down in the sticky strip. Now I wound the rest of the strip around and made a paper rose. Then I put a Real Red Corduroy button brad into the flower. Using another strip of Sticky Strip on the outside of the card, I added black gingham ribbon to the bottom of the card. On the inside, I cut a slightly smaller piece of Real Red cardstock on the inside of the card (covered brad prongs and ribbon leftovers, etc. Then using the Modern Label punch and a dimensional added the "Thinking of You" from the Teeny Tiny Wishes stamp collection.

I also just played with the stuff I have...I experimented with the Movers and Shapers dies, with the stamps, with dimensionals to pull an image off the page, with textures and colors. It was fun! Just me, Bruce Springsteen and the bands he's influenced (there was a special programming on the Rock Legends channel on TV), the dogs and my creativity.

Saturday I woke up and had a miserable headache. It went from behind my left eye, up my skull, over the top and down my right side of my neck through to my shoulder. I was not thinking about creativity just how to get rid of this headache. But, maybe because of the change in the barometric pressure, this headache clung to me all day. Having Fibromyalgia puts a damper on my creativity sessions a lot. There are some days where I have difficulty even just getting out of bed - never mind trying to get my brain to work and "create" something. I worried that I couldn't even make it a week without breaking the project.

I picked up my laptop and opened up my new Design Studio (Stampin' Up) software. I didn't know what I was going to make but my sister-in-law just sent me a series of pics of my favorite subject, my niece Zoe. So I did a layout for an 8 1/2 X 11 Scrapbook. I couldn't believe how easy it was. I decided to make a layout on my own but I could have used some pre-made templates.

I wanted to experiment first so I made a simple layout but I'm so pleased with how it turned out. My niece's favorite colors are purple and pink. The photos had a lot of green and yellow and pink in them so I wanted to make sure that color jumped out of the page. I chose the Craft paper as my background. With this software, you can add stamps and different embellishments even ribbon or sewing machine stitches. It took maybe 20 minutes to make. And, if you don't want to start from a blank page as I did, there are templates you can use. Pretty cool!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Days One through Four!

My Crafty Girl project has started with lots of heart. On Day One I went to a workshop hosted by my friend Chris and conducted by my Stampin' Up upline, Mandy Grant. We made the most beautiful Valentine's card for our Sweethearts. We used a 12 x 12 piece of Stampin' Up Close to Cocoa cardstock. I won't post a picture (I don't want my hubby to see his card before Valentine's Day!)

I have to tell you that I have become a bit of a paper snob. I have always bought whatever is on sale and have had very mixed results -- sometimes the paper is too heavy to make good folds, sometimes the paper doesn't take the ink from a stamp well and it ends up fuzzy and smudged or sometimes the die cuts reveal a white core because the paper isn't 100% colored. That is why I love the Stampin' Up cardstock because for every project, I know what my result is going to be and I'm never surprised. Plus the variety of color and speciality papers is awesome. Best of all, I think the cost is very affordable. There is also this very cool supply option that you can automatically get paper sent.

Day Two I had a little workshop at my home where I taught Angela and Cathy how to make the Valentine's day card and we also made little gift card purses (or in our case, little Valentine candy purses). Holly came late but she was able to make the purses too. We had a blast playing with all my Stampin' Up stamps. Cathy made me a prototype Valentine card using the heart treat cups! When I've perfected it, I'll post the finished product!

Day Three -- The picture here is not that clear but I'm taking a class on watercolor markers. This is using a stamp from the Eastern Blooms and four different watercolor markers. Once you color in the stamp with the markers you sprints them with water and then stamp the page. The result really makes the stamp look like hand-painted water colors.

Tonight we had Bunco and made a really cool card using the small star punch and ribbon scraps behind the punched out stars. Such a great way to use your ribbon scraps. I will post a picture tomorrow.