Archive | October, 2011

Happy Halloweeeeenie!

31 Oct

I love Halloween. Love love love it. This Halloween hasn’t been nearly as fun as the old days though. I just loved it as a kid and I loved it when my kids were little. Now that they are “old” it has lost a bit of its luster. I do have three big pumpkins outside my house, but no one carved them this year. And we don’t really have any other decorations up either. Maybe next year.


And I can’t believe I don’t have any Halloween pics on my computer of my kids dressed up in their younger years. I have an entire Halloween photo album (that’s how much I love Halloween) but not one on my computer that I could throw on a blog post. Again, maybe next year.


Another thing missing this year is the annual competition that Grayslake used to put on for the public entities to carve pumpkins based on a theme. Not sure what happened, perhaps bad economy, but no pumpkin contest this year.  So since I am completely empty handed, I’m going to post what I do have…pictures from the pumpkin contest of years past.


This was the 2006 entry for the Pirates of the Caribbean theme. We won First Place – Most Creative for this one and it was my first entry representing the Instructional Services Center of the school district where I work for my day job.



This one was 2007 and the theme was Country Western. We didn’t do so well this time around, but I thought I did a most unusual theme. Most others were cowboys.


2008’s theme was Under the Sea. This time I made an oyster with pearl inside and the gourd octopus on top. This year I finished a little too early and we were starting to get “ucky” looking by the time the judging took place.


The theme for 2009 was Zoo Animals, I think. I can’t remember, actually. This year was Apple’s release of the Snow Leopard operating system, and being that I was representing the technology department of the school district, I went with that as my entry. I really enjoyed working on this pumpkin – although, in making those whiskers I cut a chunk out of one of my fingers. Was contemplating stitches, but it healed up pretty well. You can still see the scar and I have a lump there, but it was worth it. I loved this pumpkin.


2010’s theme was Harry Potter and I made Hedwig, Harry’s owl. I liked this one a lot since the stem of the pumpkin made a perfect bird beak. Lots of painting and gluing involved in this one and I’m still finding feathers at home. This one also won First Place – Most Creative, which to me is what I always aim to win.

So this year, there is no contest. No pumpkins were dropped off at the “day job.” I missed doing it. Maybe next year.


Random Phone Photo Friday

28 Oct


Ok, those of you who know me personally know that I have this strange fascination with pumpkins. Not sure when that happened. I didn’t always have it – I think I developed it since I had kids. Anyway, in all of my 45 years I had never been to a pumpkin patch to pick my own pumpkin. I know, weird huh?




This is my boy picking out a pumpkin. Or that might have been mine, I’ll have to look closely with my glasses on. But we had a ball – it was his first time in a pumpkin patch too. We got ourselves 4 big pumpkins and had a lot of fun.




P.S. I know, right? It’s amazing how much better my phone photos are with a clean lens. And this with a completely not smart phone.

Have you seen this?

27 Oct

Mine were Honest, Naive, Insecure, and Thoughtful.

What did you get? Post a comment!



Wicked Web Wednesday

26 Oct

Seriously. Who thinks of things like this? I am so blown away by the remarkable creativity of people some days.


Jennifer Collier is a British artist who recycles paper into 3D objects by sewing sheets of it like fabric. I found this website – Co. Design a few days ago and couldn’t help but bookmark this one right away. Absolutely stunning, and I have no clue how she does it. How does she not rip the paper??



She says her inspiration comes from the paper itself. The typewriter is made of a typewriter manual. A telephone from telephone books. And the camera, from old photos.


All pieced together with an ordinary sewing machine. Thanks to Belinda Lanks, senior editor at Co.Design for posting the original article and completely blowing my mind.




Fact: Pumpkins

25 Oct

Saw this today on a website I use at the day job. I’d never heard this before. You??



Random Phone Photo Friday

21 Oct


Growing up in my family we always went to the library every Saturday. It was a Saturday morning ritual. Several hours at the library, then lunch at Taco Bell, or White Castle back in Michigan, or Jimmy’s Hot Dogs in Arlington Heights and then Jewel for food shopping. That was Saturday.



Once I had kids, we also went to the library. A lot. Margo’s first word was “Book”. When she was little she walked into a bookstore once, stretched out her arms, spun around and proclaimed “Look at all the wonderful books!” We love books. And the library.



We recently found these awesome little creations at our local library in Grayslake. Made out of book tape. There were lots of them, but I liked these two the best. Aren’t they great!

Wicked Web Wednesday!

19 Oct

You know I’m quite fond of the whole recycling, repurposing, upcycling, remaking, redoing, 2nd chancing thing going on now. So I love to post about new websites I find with amazing artisans who make cool stuff. Case in point:

Erin Gursslin’s Sunshyne Silverwear website of Recycled Spoon Pendants and more! Recycled spoons?? Awesome! What a great idea. Once upon a time, on a trip out west I bought a rocking awesome fork necklace. I should take a pic of it although it is badly tarnished now. I will shine it up and take a pic soon. Not sure who made it, but I love it! Getting back to Erin…

These are baby spoons! Yes, baby spoons! Hand decorated and can be used for baby shower gifts. How perfect! And adorable! They can be purchased in sets of 15 and include little pillow boxes to give to your guests. Check these out here.

Totally gorgeous…and priced right too. Check out Erin’s work at Sunshyne Silverwear – these would make great unique handcrafted and eco-friendly gifts this holiday season!

P.S. I love that she calls herself an “Eco-preneur”.

Random Phone Photo Friday

14 Oct

I’ve been a’slackin lately with the posts. I ran out of pre-scheduled posts so I’m going to take this opportunity to try to write up a couple.We can entitle this one  “Mums – My Favorite Flower.  When they are small and cute and not threatening to take over the free world.


So last year – the first year in my humble little rental abode – I cleared out all the weeds that inundated my garden area and did some landscaping. I planted a couple little burning bushes, some pampas grass, some dusty miller, and my favorites – mums. Keep in mind – I have little to no money most of the time, so this landscaping was done on the major cheap. Like tiny little plants cheap. I’m wishing that I took a photo of it after I planted. Because for some reason…


…my tiny little landscaping has been over-run by ginormous mutant mums! I swear I have no idea how this occurred. I’m pretty sure mums don’t just start eating patio furniture on their own. I’m wondering if a neighbor has been force feeding my mums miracle grow or something. And this photo is from BEFORE they bloomed. They got even bigger!


The mums are so big now that they have fallen over in the middle. So it looks like there is a wolf den or something about that size that could nicely fit in the hole left by the mum branches falling over. Yes, I said branches. My mums are much more like bushes now than flowers. As a matter of fact, I’m not even sure where the burning bushes are. They have both been overwhelmed by the mums. I can see the very top of one of them peeking out from the midst of the mums.



They are gorgeous though, aren’t they? And aren’t you glad I figured out that I could clean the recessed lens on my phone? Nicer now, huh?


Squirrels. {Shudder}

13 Oct


Yes, I know, they didn’t really bring down the senate, but you gotta admit it is a compelling headline. And a freaking scary picture. If you want to, read the rest of the story here.



Wicked Web Wednesday!

12 Oct

Today’s great website is the FEED Projects. I stumbled upon this site, I believe, through Shop with Meaning, although I could be mistaken. I’m losing track. I am thankful for the bookmark feature on web browsers so I can remember what I’m doing at all.



FEED Projects’ mission is to create good products that help FEED the world. They do this through the sale of FEED bags, bears, T-shirts and other accessories by building a set donation into the cost of each product. This the impact of each product, signified by a stenciled number, is understandable, tangible, and meaningful.


FEED Products uses environmentally-friendly and artisan made materials, along with fair-labor production in creating all products. Like this one – just in time for Halloweeeeeen!


Read more about FEED Products mission and the challenge. They are a great company doing good. Shouldn’t we all strive for that?




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