Friday, April 8, 2011

How a box of rice saved me over $600

Yes, it is TRUE! A box of Minute Rice (brown) saved me a small fortune! While we were in Arizona, I was stupid enough to go hot tubbing with my phone (it was in my suit pocket, in case you're wondering). I know I feel brain dead after a show, but I obviously really was this day!

The worst thing is I had to place orders and FAST for the next show, which we had to travel to, and there wasn't much time for stops (like the Verizon store). Need I tell you how time consuming it was to order on a 3" screen with small buttons? It took F-O-R-E-V-E-R and was very frustrating! Needless to say, I was off the grid for awhile and I'm still trying to catch up!

I finally got Jeff to stop at a Verizon store that was close to the Walmart we were camping at for the night, so I went in to discover a new phone was going to cost $600+! What was I to do? It's my only internet connection, and most of my business is done online....that's how I order, that's how I communicate with customers, that's how I entertain the children (and myself) on long drives! So I purchased a new phone {OUCH!} and berated myself for being so stupid!

I'm glad I told Mechele of my stupidity because she told me how to get the moisture out of the phone (both her sons had used this trick successfully)! I always tell people to learn from my mistakes and that will be less that you have to make on your own, so don't go hot tubbing (or swimming) with your phone! But if you do, here's how to fix it: Immediately remove the battery from the phone. Place the phone, backing and battery into a zip close bag with the rice covering it and leave it sealed for a few days to a week.

After 3 days I was getting impatient and needed to see if the phone had risen from the dead...I took it from the bag of rice, blew it off, and reassembled it. ... ... ... Powered it up ... ... ... waited ... ... ... waited ... ... ... and it worked!!!!!! YAY!  Now the only problem was that the new phone had service and this one did not! Time to find another Verizon store, but not in Vegas...we'll look in Utah.

This story has a happy ending, I was able to return the new phone after using it for only a week while my old one dried out, but I'm still having a time getting caught up online....we took the north route out of Utah and east through Wyoming....if you've ever been through this territory, you know how desolate most of it is! Today we crossed into Nebraska, lost an hour and maybe tomorrow I can stay online.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Green Leftovers Anyone?

While blog hopping the other day, I noticed a few "go green" challenges and it brought two things to mind. The first being, obviously, the color green and the second being recycling or reusing. So after everyone went to bed, I created this celebration card which features reused peel off sticker leftovers. 
I had colored butterfly peel off stickers with Starform markers and created beautiful rainbow colored butterflies, that I adorned many things with (including Mechele of the Stamp Doctor's laptop), but left me with a sheet of colorful leftover sticker bits. I burnished the leftover bits onto a Starform Transfer Sheet, then placed those bits on the frame I had created using Cheery Lynn Designs Little Stackers dies (Scalloped Oval and Inverted Scalloped Oval)
I used a peel off sticker in silver that I placed on acetate and raised off the card base with foam dots and colored (on the back) with both Starform Markers and Creative Inspirations paints in Carmel and Green Olive. These paints are awesome and really shimmer! I applied the CI paints by dabbing them onto the acetate using a Fantastix brush tip applicator.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Elementary, My Dear Teacher

Mrs. Weiss & me, Mesa AZ 3/6/11
At the stamp show in Mesa, AZ I met someone from my Kindergarten teacher Sandy Weiss! I had my oldest son take a picture to share with you.

It was so great to see her after all these years, it brought back a lot of memories (The Letter People, Patch the Pony, show & tell, and ice cream socials to name a few).

She was a wonderful teacher, and helped to foster a love of learning that I still have today. I thought it was kind of neat that we met up again after so many years, and at a stamp convention at that!

I was glad that she stopped by our booth and we started talking, otherwise we wouldn't have even known that we knew each other! She happened to notice on our sign that we are from Fowlerville, MI and mentioned that she taught in Brighton for 30 years, and then retired to Arizona with her husband.

We chatted for a few minutes before I asked her what grades she taught (K-3) and which school district (Howell). Then I told her that I attended elementary at a small school (Birkenstock)...and we realized that she had been my first teacher - what a small world, and a nice surprise!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Cards I Made on the Road...Last Year

Better late than never right? Last year was our first year working & living on the road. We spent the first couple of weeks of January in Texas and then headed back east. We stopped at a campground with friends in Mississippi, then parted ways and headed to Alabama where we spent the next two weeks. The kids had fun in "Sweet Home Alabama" and so did I! I was able to utilize the clubhouse as my own personal HUGE craft was FUN! Here are a few of the cards I designed during that time.
Bear in mind that I did not have access to any DPs, only white, cream & glossy layering swatches and Core'dinations CS with my only coloring media being the 60 colors of Shades Dye Ink and reinkers. Please excuse the so-so photography, I've since gotten a much better camera!
433 Embroidery Bouquet (SweetStamps) stamped on glossy white CS with Distress Embossing Ink and heated with Platinum EP. Colored with Memento markers. MS border punch used on bottom of light blue CS panel.

7042 Triple Tulips (SweetStamps) stamped with White Dye Ink on 36# Vellum and colored from the back with Shades Dye Ink and a Dove Blender Pen.

Heart Frame stamped with White Dye Ink on 36# Vellum and embossed with Queen's Gold EP. Etched with Blue Embossing Pad and Stylus Tools. Center of heart was cut with 4-Split Perforating Tool on Black Perforating Mat, embossed with a Cuttlebug folder and then glued back into the center. Mounted on Champagne Stardream textweight paper and then onto Hera Stardream CS that had been embossed with a Cuttlebug Border.

All stamps by SweetStamps: Shades Dye Ink: Envy, Kilkenny Green, Peapod. Applied with Coarse Pouncer to the base of card, with a sponge to the Irish stamped panel, and with a Dove Blender Pen on the stamped patchwork frame. Green Core'dinations CS was embossed with Argyle Cuttlebug Embossing Folder and sanded. All layers were edged with a Gold Krylon leafing pen.

668 Tulip Bunny (SweetStamps) stamped on Glossy CS with Distress Embossing Ink and embossed with Platinum EP. Colored with Shades Dye Inks and a Dove Blender Pen. Layered onto a piece of Whitewash Core'dinations CS that was sanded after being embossed with a Cuttlebug folder, and mounted to a Core'dinations CS card.

700 Silhouette Flower stamped three times from a custom stamp pad I made from Cut N Dry Foam and Shades Dye Reinkers. Just Because stamped in Persimmon Shades Dye Ink which was also sponged along the edges of the torn Cream Trading Card layer.