Just FYI

Katherine was taken to the hospital at about 5:30 this afternoon. Prayers are welcome. She can talk about it when she gets back home. Evan

Friday Frustrations

ConversationsWithMoms:Every day Conversations with a Mom Blog

Thanks again to Maria, over at Conversations with Moms, for starting this. Did you know what you were in for when you came up with this idea?

This week I'm just going to give you the top frustrations of mine right now...in no special order.

The Queen's Royal Frustrations 08.02 - 08.08

Over the last week, I have been frustrated...

~ that the ice in my drink melts within 5 seconds. I love drinking Coke with grenadine (I live on that and my Mocha Frappuccino) - and I love drinking it with lots of ice. The grenadine sinks into the ice, so when you've finished the Coke, you're left with cherry flavored ice. Well, usually. Not lately. Not here. I just get watered down cherry Coke. Blech.

~ about my computer woes. It has been excruciating to use the computer - and I've had lots of work to get done on it. The bright spot? With my frustration level at the maximum over this whole thing, I had extra time to work on art...which is always a good thing!

~ that the idiots at NBC are dumping one of the two best shows on TV. My Name is Earl has been cancelled...and the season finale was it. No warning.

Now that I've finished hyperventilating, my mind is racing with questions...will it be a few months of re-runs while TBS picks up the folks of Camden County? Or will Earl, Randy, Catalina, Joy, and Crabman go the way of Arrested Development?? (Which was another huge mistake - by the similarly idiotic people working at Fox.) And even more frustrating? The season (series???) finale wasn't even that good.

~ that the other brilliant show on TV, House, is on hiatus for the summer. Ok, so I'm not that frustrated...since I can still see Hottie Hugh in re-runs this summer. Oh, how I wish I were at the mental hospital to comfort him! (I'm so jealous of Cuddy - even if it is just acting!)

~ the childebeasts think chores are a choice...an option. And that M stands for Maid...not Mom.

~ I can't do what I want to do. Between Cushing's and my back, I'm not able to do what I want, when I want. And don't get me started on Disability...I just found out this week that the appeal process is long. Apparently, Colorado is backed up on these appeals to the degree of 17.5 MONTHS. Which should add up to a nice check. That I will promptly get to share with my attorney...whom I'm pretty sure is not disabled. (Do NOT send me hate mail about how they "earn" their money. I know that, der. I'm frustrated - not stupid.)

~ I've had my new glasses for about six weeks...and they're already broken. Unlike my last pair, the left lens keeps falling out. (My last pair refused to hold onto my right lens.)

~ that I get to wear some really beautiful compression stockings. Since the temperature is going up and summer is on the way, I'm sure these scrumptious beige, knee high beauties will be just the touch to reel in Mr Right. Who could pass these lovelies up? Keep your jealousy to yourself.

~ I can't figure out how I landed in a time warp. Something is happening to all my time - but I don't know what. I want time to work on art...but the 'beasts are constantly needing something. The Princess has spent most of the summer at her father's (sniff, sniff) - so it's just the two teenage boys home. You would think that would cut down on the amount of work to be done. NOT! (See frustration #5 above.) I've become the "hang out house" - and not by choice. There are kids here. Constantly. It's like a stream of kids that doesn't end. Where did all these friends come from?? Granted, it's fun to sit and talk with them sometimes...but it would also be nice to have my house back. So that goes on all day (while other parents are working, I guess)...and then...what happened? It's 7:30 and we haven't had dinner...nothing is even cooking for dinner...I haven't decided what we'll eat...ok, there aren't even groceries in the house to make something! I slap something together - that I can convince myself is a little nutrionally sound (Fruit Roll Ups and french fries are good, right? A fruit, starch, vegetables - potatos and the tomatoes in catsup - and fine, I'll give them some milk so they have their dairy) - and WAM! It's five-after-ten and I'm cursing myself for not getting them in bed at a decent time...so they don't sleep til 2 the next day. Gremlins? Ghosts? The aforementioned time warp? WHO is stealing my time?? And what are they doing with it??

~ to have to hunt down my ex every month so I can beg for the child support he's supposed to pay for the Princess. It's only been 111 months...I can understand why he has a hard time remembering it's due every month. Seeing her would definitely not remind me, either.

The Princess
~ And on top of having to hunt him down, and going above and beyond the court ordered visitation/support agreement...which gives him 2 weeks a year for vacation - and I've given him most of the summer, per his request demands...when I contacted him for child support, he "notifies" me (the day it's due) that he's had to pay daycare for her while he works...and since his expenses have gone up, I can pay for daycare. I say no...if she was home, she wouldn't be in daycare. He won't listen...and takes $150 out of the support check, totally throwing off my pathetic monthly budget.
~ a neighbor, who has 2 'beasts who hang with my 'beasts - the oldest boy practically lives here, spending a lot more time here than he does at his house - moved last weekend. That isn't the frustrating part. I'm intensely frustrated that my two 'beasts were their movers (no one else showed up - a few of her guy friends said they would help - but didn't...and my boys are majorly buff and strong compared to her son...the only other people there were the mom's friend and her 3 small kids)...ok, so my two 'beasts were her movers - they moved her entire 3 bedroom townhouse to a third floor, 2 bedroom apartment - ALL on their own. Then - and this is the really frustrating part - she PAYS HER SON (in front of my boys)...and TELLS MY BOYS she'll take them to Elitches (Six Flags) or Water World sometime this summer. Huuuhhh??? (She doesn't do anything with her own kids, much less any other kids...which is why her son is always at my house.) ARGH!!

~ that I don't have a car!

~ that my pain meds have hit a wall and aren't working like they should. #($*#$^

~ that I keep gaining weight, thanks to my friend Cushings.

~ and my final frustration? It's my birthday on the 9th - and the 'beasts are known for forgetting it. Understandable, they're kids. (Well, my 16 year old should remember, but...) But no one even recognizes it...which just makes me...very sad. It's like a repeat of Mother's Day all over again. Which totally sucks, since single moms deserve recognition on Mother's Day. Ugh. Don't get me started. So the kids are going fishing for MY birthday - because my aunt and uncle have a Godson who has a birthday on the 4th. He's turning 4...so they are all going out to celebrate HIS birthday. Hell yeah I'm jealous. Not of the 4 year old, come on. I'm not that pathetic. (I think.) He should have his birthday celebrated - with balloons, friends, tons of presents, cake, and whatever. And maybe a clown. Yeah. A clown. All kids like clowns, right? They never find them scary and evil, or have nightmares about them. Naaah. So yeah, I'll even help out the celebration by sending a clown. (Kidding.) But what about me?? Am I invisible? Lately it feels like I am.

WOW - you gotta whopper today, eh? You got to hear all the royal complaints - without even asking.

(Since this Meme is done on Friday, is anyone else worried about what may happen in the next day to piss me off??)

And I can't even blame it on PMS. I just believe if people shouldn't be obnoxious. To me. lol

Ok, that's more than enough. Now let go of whatever is frustrating you - and go enjoy your weekend!


Wanna Visit My Rock? Or Help with My Silver?

Happy Thursday...from under the rock I've taken to living under! I would venture it's an officially royal rock...but I'm not 100% positive. It's kind of hard to see much from under here.

I've finally gotten rid of the spiders and cleaned up a bit, which was a daunting task since those ants sure like to party wildly. Of course, the quiet didn't last long, though - that built-in homing device children have installed at the factory, made sure they weren't detached from my hip for long. Both my ears and my nerves will attest to that. And for those whose offspring start school on August 24, there are 18 days left. That is the official countdown...and I'll be happy to keep you updated on it.

Here is a little art I accomplished over the last few days.

Since the Princess is spending so long at her dad's, I've made her a care package. When I told her I was going to send her something, she requested a book - and was very specific about what colors the pages should be.

I began with white cotton fabric that has little opaque white triangles on it. I colored it using a technique I read about in Quilting Arts. In the February/March '09 issue, Cynthia St Charles describes a Glue Gel Resist technique in her article, "Color Therapy" (pp 55-59). Altho I had never heard of Ms St Charles before this article, I was instantly hooked on her article. She uses Elmer's Gel Glue (the green gel type, not the white stuff) as a resist in her fabric work - and the results are amazing. Stunning. Totally delish. Here is a link to the Gel Resist quilts on her blog. She is an incredible artist - and the article she wrote describing the technique was awesome! Reading the article made it incredibly easy to try the technique. I had a great time doing it, it wasn't toxic, it was quick, and it was so much easier than working with traditional resists. This technique is so safe and easy, a child can do it.

So that's what I started with - I drew random doodles on my fabric with the glue. I used all sorts of fabric paints to add color, washed out the glue and stood, totally impressed with myself. (*Note: I'm now really irritated my local grocery stores don't carry this version of Elmer's Glue. I live in a large metropolis...what is wrong with these people??)

For the first time ever, I used a stitch other than the straight stitch on my sewing machine - I used a zig zag stitch around the measured edges of the fabric - and I really went for the gold by zigging and zagging with blue AND orange. I know. Hold your applause. I'm still floating off my own awesomeness.

I hand stitched the "R" after lightly drawing it on the fabric with pencil. (I'm not brave enough to just sew it. I'm getting there, but not there yet.) I also hand stitched the green swirls, leaves and flowers, as well as the swirls at the top of the "R". I added 3 little charms - the butterfly, heart and kitty head - as well as a couple of seed beads. After 3 layers of batting, I attached the fabric to the Bind-It-All cover - which is just a real sturdy chipboard sized to 4"x4". After finishing off the back of the front cover, I worked on the back cover. The back cover is the same, but plain.

I cut all the papers to the specifications of the Princess (God forbid I don't follow those directions!), and went to use the Bind-It-All. That's when I ran into a problem. The Bind-It-All rocks to cut paper and chipboard...but it doesn't really care for chipboard covered in batting and fabric. It was too fat to fit in the skinny little slot. What to do?! I traced the holes onto the insides of the covers from the pages, then took out my frustrations by cutting the holes out with my X-acto, then pounding out the pieces with my needle tool. Since the fabric wouldn't cooperate very well - and the batting kept trying to pop up through the covers - I just made slits in the fabric so the wires would go through. I bound it all together, tied a few ribbons on the wires, and viola!

Onto Part II...the silver art clay I think I screwed up. Will someone with some experience with this stuff help a sistah out a little? Did I mess it up? How can you tell if it's old? (I looked and looked and there was no date on the packet I bought.) How do you know when you're done firing it when using a torch? I followed instructions I found online, but...I dunno. I've sanded the pieces a bit with my Dremel, followed by some 800 grit wet/dry sandpaper...but I dunno. What am I missing?
Left to Right: Covered a silk cocoon and made a sort of nest shape. Under that is a little egg I'm going to put in the nest. Then there's a crown...but the prong on the left came off during firing. Waaah. Two little charms - the top one was the first one I torched, and I accidentally did it too long. The bottom of the charm melted - but it looks cool now. The last peice on the far right is an art doll. Help!


More Recent Art

I'm procrastinating.

Abstract watercolor with some very fine glitter
Oh yeah - happy Wednesday, by the way. I suppose that was kind of rude of me, being gone for so long...then thinking I could just jump right back in; no niceties or whatever. So yeah - happy Wednesday!


I haven't been slacking while not online - I've actually been pretty busy making some art. I finally sculpted/fired my silver art clay - but I'm not sure it turned out right. I'm going to take pictures and show you guys - so hopefully someone can tell me what's up with it. (I'm wondering if it may have been old.)

Tyvek samples - Before

Tyvek samples - After
(Some samples didn't make it to the photos...but I'm not entirely sure why)

Tyvek base that was painted, then heat treated. Copper screen, ribbon, vintage cabachons and beads, and green fiber screen adorn the base. Along the bottom are punched copper sheet shapes, with fibers tied through the holes in the copper sheet. Some fibers are braided, some aren't.
Here is a little more of what I've been up to. Comments, criticisms, "whatever!" are all welcome. Just be gentle - I'm in a fragile emotional spot right now. (More on that titillating subject later.) What does that mean? Well...I probably won't react to "I think this stuff sucks" as well as I usually would. If that's what you have to say, my advice is to you after you hit "enter"? Run. Fast.

And I wanted to thank you guys who have left comments lately - they've literally meant the difference between me checking in somewhere, and staying here. I love all my blog buddies - you guys are simply the best!

Heat treated plastic bag. Began as a random design - I think it turned out looking like a dress! Now to finish it...

How fun did this heat treated plastic bag turn out? I think I used 7-8 plastic bags - it's very sturdy. Painted with red acrylic paint & embellished with the Royal Ribbon Technique in gold and black. I finished it all off by drawing doodles and writing with a white paint pen. I'm going to use it as a journal cover - it's the perfect size to cover a composition book.

And finally, my latest doodle.

Have a great week! xx

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