Sunday, December 28, 2008

Playing with Cards & Money

Here are some fun things... there is a site called Festisite where you can personalize playing cards and money. I used it to create some fun things, then used my photoshop program to edit them even more.. *S*
Here's my daughter as the Queen of Clubs and the Queen of Diamonds. (My SIL will not be amused that Kasey is taking over the queen position..*EG*)
And here is my million dollar grandbaby Jorden!

And one of my grandsons, Jake, as the Jack of Spades.

Check out the's fun!

Friday, December 26, 2008

Christmas Gatherings....

We had a good Christmas, but a busy one... coming from a large family makes it a bit hectic at times, and this year we also hosted my husband's family on Christmas Eve. But it was a nice time with family, here are some photos from the various gatherings...
The first one is our family, minus granddaughter, Jorden, who was with us on Sunday and Monday for a family celebration. (see those photos from a few days ago).

And here are some others ...

We went to the Christmas Day service, which is normally very small and intimate anyway... this year was no exception.. but unfortunately, the Christmas Eve service, which normally has 100 - 120 people had less than 40, due to the weather... that service is always so wonderful, sorry that many missed it... we sure had tons of extra bulletins leftover...*sigh*

Anyway... here's a photo of the altar this year... it's always so beautiful.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Our Angel Granddaughter...

Since Kasey has been laid off from her photography studio, she has been searching the net for good deals on cameras and equipment so she can do more freelance photography for other places and on her own as well. On Saturday we went to Good Will and she found some old blue material that she brought home and spray painted a background to it so she could use it as a back drop for photos. She used it in taking some photos of our granddaughter, Jorden. They turned out SOOO cute!!

We took some props from the costume dept. at Church, used some things we had here at home and managed to keep Jorden smiling enough to snap some wonderful photos! I even like the ones where she is not so happy... *L* "This angel work isn't all fun and games you know.", said Jorden.

And then Kasey also took some wonderful Christmasy photos of Jorden in her new Christmas dress that Kasey bought for her and a few with Daddy Kaine and Jorden...they are adorable too!!

Christmas Celebrations (early)...

We celebrated our family Christmas with our children and grandchildren on Sunday night. Kasey was already home, a few days earlier...Kaine brought home Jorden for a couple of days, arriving Sunday morning, and Janel, John, Jake, Josh & Jeff all came after Janel finished work for the day.

It was a fun time together, we just ordered pizza so we wouldn't have to cook, had some snacks beforehand.. a dessert bar that Janel made (yum!) and some stuffed mushrooms that Kasey & I made, brandy slush and assorted beverages.

We ate, opened the gifts, and then had fun with the kids toys *L* (btw, those remote control helicopters are a blast!! - it's like a giant dragonfly or mosquito buzzing you! ha)

Here are some photos of the fun... (thank you Lord for our family, our kids, daughter in law, grandkids and the many blessings you have given us all.)

Friday, December 19, 2008

Snow Storm Today....

Looks like we won't be doing any grilling on the back deck today, eh? *L*

These photos were at about 7:30 am ... the snow is still coming down hard too.

Love snow storms like this... well, as long as it's not ME that has to plow or shovel it... *S*

Hubby is out now starting to plow for the first time today... bet he has to go back several times through out the day.

Anyway.... since it's a snow day here for me it will be a good chance to get the house decorated and cleaned! Especially since I have Kasey home to help too!

More photos later....
I took an idea from my daughter who did a photoshop of our deck umbrella and turned it into a Christmas tree... here are our masterpieces! *L*
As you can see, we aren't getting much decorated around the house..but our blogs look festive! *L*

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Last Supper Wine Cork Assemblage

Okay... I said I wouldn't be making anymore assemblages before the first of the year...but I had this one in the works for my girlfriend, Deb's, birthday. It's a framed assemblage with a silver metal cross showing The Last Supper, the cross is surrounded by wine corks. With the saying at the bottom that was once a small little wall hanging of some sort, now included on this piece, and at the top is a silver wine cork remover.... hope she likes it... I included a bottle of wine and a blue crystal glass door knob wine stopper with it.

The wine is pretty cool too... Seven Deadly Zins, it goes well with the religious theme, eh? *L*...and the label makes you is part of what the label on the back says:
Schulenburg's vines, grubby with GREED,
Embrace Lodi's soil, to drink and to feed.
Oh Lord, forgive me my zin.
Secure in it's strength, weathered with PRIDE,
Standing like soldiers, the forest of Snyde.
Oh Lord, forgive me my zin.
Hearts filled with LUST, ole Maley's trees.
Court Lodi's sun, and flirt with it's breeze.
Oh Lord, forgive me my zin.
Good Bishofberger did raise some GLUTTONOUS beast,
Vines fattened like turkeys before Thanksgiving feast.
Oh Lord, forgive me my zin.
With the tilt of the glass, I commit seven zins,
Oh Lord, with your help... I'll do it again.

*NOTE* Check out my post from Oct. 28th for another wine cork assemblage I made too.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

The sucky economy is hitting close to home...

On Monday afternoon our daughter called, she had been laid off from her photography job, which she has had for the last 4 years. She transferred to IL to the new studio that her company opened about a year and a half ago, to be assistant manager and one of the head photographers and she was enjoying the new aspect of that venture. She gave up her life in Milwaukee and made the move... unfortunately she is one of the latest victims of this recession, which seems to be bordering fast on a depression. I went down to her apartment on Monday afternoon, spent the night, we cried together, prayed together, had comfort foods, some liquid libations, watched some TV, surfed the internet for jobs, cameras, info...and just commiserated together. She may have to move home, but to break her lease is MAJOR $$$$, so for now, she is staying put, and giving herself some time to explore options.

It really does suck... and my heart breaks for her too. And for her company, who had to lay off many others and is facing some bad times, and more decisions for their future operations too.

And since the weather has been so horrible here lately, and some building jobs have been put on hold until after summer, hubby is also home and had to lay off his crew.

And we are just a small part of the growing unemployment picture...
There are many who are so much worse off....I can't imagine, Lord have mercy on us ALL!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

"The time has come", the walrus said, "to talk of many things..."

...Actually, the time has come to think of, and DO, many OTHER things... unfortunately, like putting art projects on hold for now, and getting Christmas decorations out, cleaning house, finish shopping, start preparing Brandy slushes for the freezer, yummy goodies, looking over recipes, and of course the dreaded well as finishing up Christmas and Sunday bulletins at work, etc..etc..etc..

Soooo, with much reluctance, I will probably not be making any assemblages for the next two weeks or so. I already know I'm missing it!

Time to prepare my heart and mind for the coming celebration of Jesus' birth too.
So, I'll repost this assemblage, it fits the season and coming celebration.. "The Present of Presence".

John the Baptist urged us to "Prepare ye the way"... have you prepared the way for the coming of Christ into your heart, your mind, your life during this hectic season..which should actually be a blessed season? My gosh, it's already the 3rd Sunday of Advent, it's long past time I should have started!
Lord, in Your mercy... hear my prayer.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

A day of visiting & shopping...

We took off early this morning for Portage, to visit Uncle Chick & Aunt Evelyn. Uncle Chick is in a nursing home there. The last we visited was about a month and a half ago. His memory seems to be the same as what it was the last time, it didn't seem to be any worse, that's a good thing! We had a nice visit with both of them. They are facing a time of separation, although Aunt Evelyn tries to get in every day to see him...but it's got to be a lonesome time for them both. They were so used to being the major part of each others lives for over 60+ years, and are still soooo much in love after all these years... what a great testimony they give to us, and to so many!

Afterward we finished some Christmas shopping and while picking up some gift certificates stopped in for a smelt basket & mac n cheese wedges at Tubby's.. YUMMMM

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Grandson Jake's Hockey Game

Our 7 year old grandson, Jake, is in hockey again this year ... we attended his game tonite. He does pretty good for being one of the younger ones on the team! Here are some photos.. not real clear, as we were up in the WARM seats and not down on the ice.

There are ups and downs to the game, as Jake demonstrates in this photo. All in all, he was in there a lot, slammed against the wall a couple of times, but back up right away and after the puck again... WELL DONE JAKE!!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

St. Nicholas Sunday

Sunday, Dec. 7th, our church recognized St. Nicholas, Bishop of Myra. (His actual feast day was Dec. 6th). The modern day Santa Claus is modeled from this real Saint.
There are many sites that tell about St. Nicholas, one good place to learn more is The Saint Nicholas Center

St. Nicholas was part of both our church services, he offered small bagged treats to young and old, during the sermon time he invited children to come forward to talk with him, and they received a small gift too. Following the service photos for kids of all ages were taken with St. Nicholas, and of course, I didn't pass up that chance... hope I am on his list of GOOD girls...*G*

Friday, December 5, 2008

The Bailey Family Assemblages

The inspiration for this "family" came from a pitcher and mug I found that were advertisements for Bailey's Irish Cream. I used teapots, sugar dishes, candlesticks and more to create this family.

The Bailey's son was originally a hard boiled egg holder, he is shown with his pet dog jumping at his feet.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Altered Red Torso Assemblage "The Archangel"

Here's the latest torso I've been working on, I'm not sure what I'll title it yet. It's changed a lot from my original ideas of things I was going to do to it. I may add something more to it?

This is a full size torso, which I gessoed, added various materials to it to give it texture, metal screen material, fabric screen, plaster strips, a few pages from a hymnal and then decoupaged with red tissue paper. I added several coats of dark walnut stain over that to get it to match the head. The head used to hold a clock, I added decoupaged arms to it, a picture of Mona Kasey for the face, (It's my daughter with a Mona Lisa smile).

There is a beaded snake belt which I made into a necklace that wraps around her neck and down the front.

Wings on the back are also part of it. The torso also has 6 coats of polycrylic, the head portion has about 3 coats.

**Addition to this Post**
I've decided to title this torso "The Archangel".
The Archangels are the messengers, delivering heavenly decrees to earthbound mortals. Archangels are held in highest regard, due to their closeness and service to us. Angels are the very most accessible to humankind, and indeed, are the nearest thing to being human yet having angelic qualities. These are the Guardian Angels and the Guiding Angels, God's workhorses of the earth.

The snake in this piece is symbolic of temptation, "The Archangel" helps humankind use their freewill to make wise choices, to resist temptations that would draw us away from God.

While the snake is often used to symbolize evil, the snake has both positive and negative images. For example, in the Garden of Eden there are two trees, the tree of life and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Symbolically the tree of life holds the world together in harmony and represents truth. The other tree gives the temptation of body, of earthly things, and discord. A duality between harmony and disharmony, good and bad, truth and lies is present.

The snake should not be seen as a tool of evil, but a tool of good, which was created by God and which taught humankind the notion of choices, of the duality of this world of two opposites, life and death, happiness and sadness. The snake therefore is a symbol to which we must work to rise above the material to a wider and higher knowledge of the world, and to draw closer to the Lover of our soul, closer to God.

The head piece of "The Archangel" once housed a clock, a symbol of time. This Archangel is not confined by time, unlike humans, who, while living in time, were meant for eternity.