Monday, April 30, 2007

Sweet Mail Surprise....

Well, what a sweet surprise I received in the mail last week! Thank you so much Colleen! I love everything and the boys love the lollipops:) The tin is lovely and the magnetic frames are perfect for holding ATCs. I already put Early Bird's in one:) The papers are perfect and will be put to good use too! If you haven't had a chance to stop by Colleen's blog, Frostings and Sparkles, please do so, it's very yummy and she has some new eye candy posted!

I really missed everyone last week. I am off to catch up on my comments and I wanted to thank everyone for their sweet comments. They really mean the world to me. Love, Jamie

Friday, April 27, 2007

Artwords Entry #50....Woman...

He promised her the Moon and the Stars.
I turned the mother image into a transparency and then hand painted the background and cut out flesh toned paper for their faces. I'll need to work on that technique. It is not easy to get it to match exactly. I was messing around with what I wanted to show through on her shirt. I had a grammar primer from 1882 and it had a glossary in the back and "drudgery" was the first word that showed through so I went with that theme. I love the disapproving Mother-in-Law. My husband is very wary of this piece:) No hidden meaning Honey!
I will have my computer time back on Monday. I have really missed you guys and please don't think I am ignoring your sweet comments!

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

May basket and Free Image Tuesday!......

Here's a sneak peek at my May basket for the May basket swap over at Artsymama's place. I am not cut out to arrange floral stuff. Or make and tie bows and ribbon. Or cut fabric. I have fussed with this thing until I can't do anymore! Lila honey, I hope this thing gets to you in one piece. Everything is glued down with epoxy, so I hope it makes the trip. I kind of made it into a hidden glen where fairies have fairy tea with fairy sweets. I'm going to put something across the front, but I haven't figured it out yet. I hope this counts, because my first attempts at a "traditional" May basket looked like they were arranged by my three year old! LOL!!!
Since we are so close to Mother's Day I thought I would share a Mother picture. This is a RPPC (Real People Post Card) I love these because they were available to many people who could not afford professional pictures and they show more everyday life than a studio photo. They also represent a time when communication through the mail was the main way families kept in touch. You may use this image as you wish, it is from my personal collection. If you do, please let us know so we can see your creation:) Don't forget, one of the first posts I made I posted a Mother and child photo that would be awesome for Mother's Day too. Go back and grab it too!

Monday, April 23, 2007

New Day.....

This is the ATC I made for a trade with Early Bird. I love this little girl. I just got her in a batch of photos. I printed her and then used photo pens and hand colored her. I hope you like her, girl!

Make sure you run on over to Lori's blog Faerie Window and sign up for her fabulous giveaway! She has created a one-of-a-kind paper mache lovely named, "Little Miss Spring". Her work is beautiful and very creative. Make sure you leave a comment and good luck to you all!

This week my husband is on vacation, so my computer time will be limited:) Gotta let the man get his geek on!

Friday, April 20, 2007

Perfectly Precious Piggy! and Introducing!.........

I received my "When Pigs Fly" sculpture from Lori yesterday. I can't begin to tell you the craftsmanship that went into the little fellow (I've decided he is a boy piggy:) He is so detailed and even has the tiniest, cutest curly tail that you don't even see unless you peek down into his nest. It's like a sweet surprise. He has his sweet little wings and his little fancy collar. He sits upon a box covered with ledger paper and German scrap and let me say I have never seen a box covered so well in paper. I don't know what her secret is, but it is flawless. I love the presentation. I love the art. I love the care and time that went into this piece. Thank you Lori. It will be cherished always. Love, Jamie
Also I received an email yesterday from Early Bird and she has made an ATC using the free image I posted last Tuesday. It is wonderfully beautiful and I get to trade it with her:) The coolest thing is she is new to making ATC's, but she has taken to it like a duck in water. She has even started her own craft blog, My Krafty Korner, where she can post her art. You can see the other ATC's she has made there. I am so very proud of her and her new found passion. Great Job Sweetie! Love, Jamie

Thursday, April 19, 2007

There Are Good Things Too.......

I always wonder what people think when they see me pick up their trash. I just can't help myself. I got a sweet card the other day from my friend Lynette in North Carolina. I have never met her, but she wanted to write and thank me. It was our anniversary of sorts. A little over a year ago I was digging in a huge pile of trash. It looked like someone had been evicted and all their stuff had just been put out on the curb. I initially stopped because sitting there was a huge printer's drawer. JACKPOT! So, I pulled over and started looking. I quickly found a photo album. It was a baby album of a little girl who had been born stillborn. It had her birth certificate, a little lock of hair and her sweet footprints. Immediately I knew this was wrong. No one would throw these away intentionally. I dug deeper and found more albums and two more baby books. ( This time sons who had lived) and searched until I could not find any more. I quickly loaded them into the car and went home.

What to do? I looked through every book. I saw the birth of all three of her children. Megan (born still), Colby and Dillon. I knew their names. I saw the boy's first birthdays, their first steps and the love their Mother had for them in her eyes. I saw Lynette get married and her honeymoon. Their family vacations and reunions and day to day life. I thought if this was an eviction then I probably will never find her. So I started looking in Megan's baby book. There were the baby shower pictures, the birth and a few pictures of sweet Megan. Lynette had filled out all the pages as much as she could and then the part where you record the Firsts and beyond was paper clipped closed. It was so sad, but I was thrilled to find she had filled out the family tree.

I decided to start with her father because I knew his last name would not have changed during the years. I looked it up on the Internet, hoping against hope he still lived in North Carolina. There it was plain as day and I called. I awkwardly explained who I was and what I had found and he said Thank you and that he would give Lynette my number. She called back very quickly and was thrilled and angry. She had moved from this area and left her photos with her ex-boyfriend to send at a later time. She had declining health and needed to be close to family and they all lived in North Carolina. She was so grateful. I said yes I have all of them. Megan's, Colby's and Dillon's and I will mail them to you. Then she became very quiet.

"What do you mean?", she said. I repeated it and felt confused. Had I found the wrong person? Then she began to cry. Those WEREN'T the pictures her ex-boyfriend had, but they were hers. She had stored them at a friend's home 10 years (now 11) ago and when they had a falling out the friend told her that she had thrown them all away. Lynette was devastated. All the records and pictures of the children gone forever. She never even told the boys (now teenagers) and she dreaded the day when they would ask about them. And Megan. The few pictures in her book were the only photos Lynette had ever had of her. She had resigned herself to only her memory of the short time she had when she was born. It was heartbreaking for her. The only thing we can figure is the friend did NOT throw them away, but later divorced and her husband threw them out. We probably will never know, but the important thing is they found their way home.

Lynette and I have formed a bond over the phone and she sends birthday cards to the boys and writes sweet letters to me. I felt like I knew so much about her from the albums even before I ever talked to her. Now when we talk she will say remember when I was in Florida (referring to the photos) and say yes and it goes from there. I have her memories too. Her children's childhood's forever in my mind. And sweet Megan and Lynette's grief. It is so important to preserve the past. Keep your memories alive. I feel like we do that in our art.

If you have made it this far, thank you for sticking with me. Below is the newspaper article the Fayetteville Observer ran about our story:)

April 1, 2006
Precious mementos
Section: Local & State Jennifer Calhoun
By Jennifer Calhoun
Staff writer
It had been 10 years since Lynette Poston had seen pictures of her stillborn daughter, Megan.
She thought the pictures, like her child, were gone forever.
But that changed when Poston, 38, who lives in Fayetteville, received a phone call in mid-March from a Texas woman named Jamie Miller.
Miller, 37, said she'd found a box of baby books and photo albums on the side of the road and believed the mementos belonged to Poston.
"I was confused at first," said Poston, who had lived in Dallas for 20 years and believed the albums had been thrown out by an estranged friend 10 years earlier.
"I had already grieved the loss of those things," she said.
Including, she said, the loss of the only pictures of her stillborn daughter.
Poston had left Dallas six months earlier to be closer to her family in Fayetteville because of her health problems.
Poston was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor about eight years ago.
Miller, a former teacher and stay-at-home mom from Removed for privacy, Texas, spied the pictures while driving near her neighborhood. The antiques lover saw an old pressman's table left on the curb. Next to it sat a box full of photo albums and baby books.
"I knew no mother in her right mind would throw those away," Miller said. "To me, it looked like someone was being evicted, and I didn't want that stuff to be thrown away."
After rescuing the box, Miller decided to go through the items to find out who the albums belonged to.
But what she found was a large portion of Poston's life.
"She was a total stranger, but I felt like I already knew her," Miller said.
"She had pictures of her wedding, pictures of her in childbirth, her children's first birthdays and even locks of her children's hair."
When Miller saw the photos of the stillborn daughter, she cried.
"It broke my heart. (Poston) just seemed so young to have to go through that."
Soon after, Miller found a phone number on the Internet for Poston's father, Larry, who was mentioned in the albums as living in Fayetteville.
After receiving the call, Larry Poston passed on the strange message to his daughter.
"I probably said 'Oh my God' about 10 times," Lynette Poston said. "(Miller) wouldn't even let me pay for the postage. She told me I'd suffered enough."
At the time, Miller didn't know about Poston's illness.
Instead, she says, she was moved by the meticulous way Poston had recorded the lives of her children.
"I just think that since I became a mom, I realize how fast time goes," Miller said.
"Once it's gone, it's gone. All you have left is what you record. If you don't have that, all you have are your memories."
Poston and Miller have become friends since their first contact three weeks ago, talking on the phone for hours at a time and laughing uproariously.
Poston believes the best thing to come out of the situation is Miller's friendship.
"I feel blessed right now, regardless of health problems," she wrote in a thank-you letter to Miller.
"I now have someone special to share these memories with, too."
Contributed photos
Staff photo pages 1A and 4A by David Smith
All archives are stored on a library system from NewsBank Media Services.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Even Husbands Can Be Crafty!....

Meet the Hanes Bunny! My husband watched the kids while I was at the store and he fashioned this out of the 7 year old's dirty socks. Niiiice, Honey. Anyhoo, he said they played with it for about 45 minutes. Think of all the money we could have saved at Christmas time! If I had only known they wanted dirty sock animals I could have hooked them up! LOL!!! After I took this picture the 7 year old insisted on sleeping with it. Next time, I'll take the kids with me.
PS-Thanks for all the sweet thoughts for MY Bunny Boy! He seems to feel better today AND he slept through the night. YEAH for me!!!!

Collage using vintage photo reprint, vintage text, acrylics, charcoal, stamps, magazine cutouts and sumi ink.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Tuesday Freebie!...

I just got some new photos yesterday and this lovely was in the group. On the back it says:

J.H. Nolan,
Waterville, N.Y.
This Negative Preserved.

Feel free to copy and use it in your art. The only thing I ask is that you let me see it:) The original is a little faded. You might want to darken it in Photoshop. I thought it would make a good Mother's Day something. I am just in LOVE with the little off the shoulder dressses the girls wore at that time. Thank you for your well wishes for the baby. We are off to the doctor this morning.
Oh, and this is why you will never see any clever baked goods or beautifully presented meals on my blog. I don't like to cook and I have proof. I found that GROWING in the back of my pantry. I guess I have a green thumb after all! I also may be a chemist, because I think I may have the cure for the plague in the back of my fridge.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Shazam, Indeed!!...

Ya'll have to go look at the cutest picnic idea EVER!!! My friend over at Stash Studios has made the Ultimate Picnic kit. On Wheels!!! How smart is that? Very:) While you are visiting take a look at her"Ugly Betty" and "Rockstar Momma" projects. She's got mad sewing skillz!! I want to also thank her for her unflagging support, her ability to make me smile like no other and the way she puts up with my manic phone calls:) Love, Jamie

Art and Asthma.....

Vintage photo reprint, vintage pocket watch parts (for his wings and wand), vintage watch faces, magazine cutouts, vintage sewing pattern, acrlics, vaseline, ink, gel medium and charcoal
I completed this piece this weekend. My baby is very sick (upper respiratory) so I haven't had much sleep. During the times he sleeps I am so worried about him I can't sleep so I have kept myself busy. I have to watch his asthma very closely since this bout is so severe. He keeps telling me he needs his "bref" back. It breaks my heart to see him like this. Night is the worst and during the day he only needs a treatment every 4 hours or so. Is it wrong that at around three am yesterday morning I was looking at all the empty Xopenex plastic tubes and wondering how I could alter them into charms? LOL! I need some rest. My husband took over day shift some so I could sleep, but sometimes only mommy will do. Sweet Bunny. Here he is at two this morning. Sometimes the drone of the nebulizer puts him to sleep.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Happy Friday!!!!

Just wanted to take today to say thank you for the wonderful welcome I have been given to blogland. It is an incredible community and I am so glad to have "met" you all. Hope your Friday is a great one! I have had uncontrollable urges to put party hats on these folks, so last night I finally did:)

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Artwords Entry....

Susan Tuttle has a wonderful site called Artwords where she posts a word every week and you get to express it through your art. I just discovered it last week. This week the word is chair. I've been mulling over it over and thinking on it and finally figured it out. I was thinking how utilitarian chairs are and that turned into what's my favorite chair and that turned to what's the most important thing I have ever used a chair for and that lead to rocking my babies to sleep at night. is it is. I know they are small, but those are the words to Brahms Lullaby. Oh, and don't make fun of my chicken scratch!

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Fabulous Frames...

Here are some frames I made a la Mrs. Corey Moortgat . I borrowed the idea from her Somerset Studio article in the Nov/Dec 2006 issue . I removed the glass from the first frame to take the picture. I love that dragonfly:) Both of these are 8 by 10 by 2 in size. These are SOOO much fun. I am in love the idea of them and the endless possibilities for embellishment and color scheme. I can't stop making them! (The fact that the young gentleman who cuts the wood at the Hardware store is totally cute doesn't hurt either!:) Thank you for your wonderful talent Corey. Stop on by her blog and see all the beautiful memories she creates for her two little sweetie pies!

Journaling and New Stuff for ME!!!...

Journal page using magazine images, decorative paper, acylics and charcoal.
Here is my Easter present to myself. We had a very dark and beautiful comforter before, but it was the MOST uncomfortable, scratchy thing ever. I love the new quilt and its Springy colors. I got it at Target and I am going to have to totally redo the decor of the bedroom because it was all browns and blacks before. Yeah!! Project!! Just what I need:)
Ok, I went in the garage and pulled a bunch of stuff the decorator didn't like and brought it back into the house. I think it will work with the new quilt. Plus, it was free:)

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Ahhh, Perfect Day So Far....

Ever just have one of those mornings that are perfect and everything goes so nicely? This is one of those days for me. I got the kids off to school (little man goes two mornings a week) and I stopped by the bank. There has been a birds nest I have been eyeing for months and today I decided to crawl in the underbrush and get it. That little Mama Bird must have been a fiber artist! She had cotton, dryer lint, a dryer sheet, an old shoe lace, dried flowers and twigs in there. No wonder it survived all through the summer and winter. My handpainted eggs look so cute in there! (I sent you one Sparkles!)
Then my cleaning lady came and brought me some pictures her Mom had and thought I would want. Uummm, YEAH!!! I want them! I am on Cloud Nine! They are charcoal portraits from the early to mid-1800s. They are about 24" by 18" in size. I love the little boy in his fancy clothes. He is 3 and 9months and his name is Jarwood Graham. I hope those are his parents! I will cherish these forever. I can't believe I have been in trusted with their legacy, but it is a task I don't take lightly. I will have to get a professional's opinion on how to store and archive them until I can have them framed. Just you wait!!! One day I will bore you all with my cabinet card and tintype collection! Get ready! LOL!!

Monday, April 09, 2007

Thank You Heather!!!!!!!

I received my One World, One Heart Giveaway present last week. I wrote Heather to thank her, but I wanted you to see the beautiful jewelry she makes. She sent such a sweet note and an extra gift too! I love everything and can't wait to wear it out!

Sunday, April 08, 2007

The Easter Bunny Came!!!!!....

Collage with vintage photo reprint, vintage end page, vintage image transfer on contact paper and eyelets.

Imagine our surprise when we woke up and found all these goodies on the fireplace. Our favorite thing is a chicken that walks around laying Hubba-Bubba bubble gum eggs on the carpet. The boys think it's a scream! Oh, and the boys carried those bunnies around ALL day and my little one kept saying,"He's SO CUTE!" and my 7 year old had the bunny in the sleeping spot he usually saves for Sparkles the bear when my husband I went to check on him before we went to bed. Poor Sparkles had to sleep in the middle between the bunny and Mr. Fox! LOL!!!

We also took some Easter cards and tags to the nursing home. I am a Cub Scout Den Leader (you aren't supposed to say "Den Mother" anymore) and my Scouts made cards for the Nursing Home this week. I made some extra tags out of my leftover Easter postcard images. I must have bought enough to last until the end of time! What was I thinking? Anyway, it was a wonderful day and I hope your Easter was just as great!

Quick Pic for Saturday....

Made this for our decorator as a thank you. She TOTALLY didn't "get" it. How awkward and embarrassing. She just kind of stammered and said, "Oh......(insert long pause coupled with puzzled expression here) thank you." Of course then I felt the need to "explain" every image and rambled on and on like an idiot. Afterwards it made ME feel like throwing something with wild abandon, that's for sure! LOL! Ah well. I hope everyone has a wonderful Easter day! We had SNOW flurries this morning in Texas! Unreal weather! The boys were like maniacs trying to catch the flakes on their tongues:)
I just thought of something. Maybe I should have made her collage say, " She spent my money with wild abandon!" LOLOL!!!

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Chicken+Head Chopped Off=Me....

Vintage photo, vintage text, paint, ink, charcoal, image transfer from magazine, and stamps

Is time speeding up? Because all of a sudden I can't seem to get anything finished and things are piling up on me. I feel like I am behind the curve in everything. Makes me nuts! Spring is really here to stay in Texas and boy is it beautiful. I should take some pics like everyone else has been doing to show it off. It's a short season here and once Summer starts it's miserable. Last summer we went for over 60 days without one drop of rain and temps over 100 (one day it was 106!) for 35 of those days. That's Hot. And not in a Paris Hilton kinda way either.

I finished a submission for the Somerset Studios call for vintage Halloween entries. Boy, I am really nervous and now I have to wait a LONG time before I get my rejection letter. LOL! I'm not good with rejection or waiting. I have never tried to have anything published before so it is a new experience. I guess you are not supposed to show it on your blog if you are planning to send it. Right? Oh well. It feels kind of like a let down to make a piece and then just send it off and know you aren't going to see it for a long time. I will show you this though. I aged these new doll house books with sandpaper and some coffee. It took all of about 5 minutes (just sand it gently, crinkle the pages and then dunk it in the coffee for about 5 seconds) and they turned out so precious! I love miniature things and old books, so perfect match!
I don't sell my collage art, but I have a friend who owns an antique shop here in town and she lets me put whatever I want to try in the shop to see how it goes. Sweeeet! One of my first posts was about my Easter stuff and she called today to tell me she sold all the Easter tags and all three of my Bunny Boxes and my egg assemblage frame with the ledger paper. Whoo Hoo! Then she told me that a lady came in the store and was looking around and then burst into tears. She was looking at my butterfly girl pieces and her best friend had passed away two weeks ago and her favorite thing was butterflies! That makes me feel wonderful and awful at the same time. I talked to B later and she said it was the "Beloved" piece that did it. I wish I knew her name I'd just send it to her or not. I never know in these situations if it will make a person feel better or worse.

I gave my 7 year old some face time this week so here is the baby. Well, he will be four in July, but he is still a baby to us:) We found him like this last night in the playroom. He's been sick and his sleep schedule (and MINE) is all wonky. Is wonky a word? Anyhoo..... Here's my rock-n-roll boy

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Wonderful Boy...

My sweet 7 year old set the table all by himself last night and then went and got some of my birds to decorate the table. It was the sweetest thing ever. Indulge me as I have to post a pic:)

I also decided to try my hand at a jar fairy. I found the jar in the trash a few months ago and had not figured out what to do with it yet. She's sitting in a little nest:)

Monday, April 02, 2007


Today was Bulk Trash day in my hometown. We have them twice a month. Twice!!! A Month!!!! You can set out ANYTHING (refrigerators and other broken appliances) and the trashmen haul it off for you. It rocks. Well, not according to my husband, but anyhoo...

I figured I'd put this out pretty early into the blog just so everyone understands upfront how strange I am and can trim their links accordingly! LOL!! I don't "do" every bulk trash day, but sometimes I just know when it's the right time to go. (trash ESP?) Then you can find me driving up and down the streets looking in everyone's trash like a crazy baglady. I'm the same way with garage sales. I can pass 50, but be totally drawn to the next and I always find something cool. Today was one of those days. Here are the thrown away treasures I found:

I love those suitcases!! I love the labels also. There is another one on the smaller suitcase that says, "President Hotel- Bangkok, Thailand. How cool is that!!? The jewerly I found in a little basket that I didn't photogragh. The necklace is real gold baby! All of the gift bags have never been used and how cute is that Bunny bag? Score! Nothing like free stuff:) Are you embarrassed yet Mama? LOL!


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