Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Blast Off!

I have launched a new craft blog! I know there are a million out there, but it was just something that I have been wanting to do for quite some time now. I will be featuring tutorials on inexpensive and simple craft projects, showcasing local artists/vendors and I will be advertising upcoming art shows in the area. Who knows...I may even throw in a few giveaways every now and then because people seem to like that! It's all still in the beginning stages, so please - don't judge! Have fun!

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Bang! Bang!

So Wes and I had a little bit of an "unconventional" date this week. We really believe in taking a few hours each week to spend time together with just the 2 of us, to grow closer, to bond, to reflect on our love for one another, to bask in the delight of being in each other's presence and.........

(you really didn't think I was THAT sappy did you?)
We drove out to the middle of nowhere. It was hot and infested with flies and grasshoppers. It is no wonder no one lives out here. It's hideous!

I have never shot a gun before and never even really held one for that matter. Wes had to school me on gun safety and then proceeded to set up the target. I didn't want to walk in the fields because I was scared of ticks! 

He set one target up REALLY far away! I thought there was no way I was going to be able to hit it! Can you see his tiny little dot of a body in this picture?

I first tried the handgun. Blap - Blap, poppin' a cap! It was a lot of fun and I actually got 4 shots in the black area! Not too bad for a first timer!
(yes, my eyes are closed in this picture because a fly landed on my face right as I was about to shoot! I loathe flies more than you can even imagine! What is their freakin' purpose on this earth?)

Bows and Rifles!

Don't mess! I've got game now!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Embellishing: Project #1 Complete!

My first project from the "Embellishing Techniques and Projects" book is complete!  I am actually happy with the outcome for once! Usually, I will make something and then toss it into the pile of clothes to be taken to the thrift store because I don't like the final result. I was surprised at how simple, inexpensive and fast it was to do. If you are looking to update an old piece of clothing this is a really easy way to do it! No sewing machine necessary!

Here is a picture from the book used as inspiration:
The idea is to use vintage/antique embroidered linens and use them as an applique to a garment. So cute!
The book shows beading around the floral and ribbon applique, but I opted not to go that route since it doesn't really fit my style. I love how the edges are frayed!

I started with this linen table runner and cut it apart.  

Here is the end result!

I used iron-on fabric adhesive to attach it and then I hand stitched around the applique with embroidery thread, which is really easy to do!

A little detail on the back because a pretty goodbye is just as important as a hello! 

I found the linen shirt by Converse at Target for $4.95! The linen table runner was at an antique store for $4.00. Embroidery thread is .35 cents. 
Total cost of project:
Total time to complete project:
1.5 hours

You can't beat that!

Monday, August 10, 2009

MT and Beyond - Part 4

This is the last one and boy, is it a doozie! There are a lot of photos here to cover the last portion of this trip! This may just win the award for the longest blog post in all the land!

Since Cowley, Wyoming was settled by Mormon pioneers, the town celebrates on July 24th (same as Utah!) by commemorating it's pioneer heritage. The town rapidly grows from a mere 600 people to a few thousand! It is a day full of activities, fun and heat! 

The morning always begins with a parade. More candy is handed out than on Halloween! It is a small parade but one with a lot of heart! 
The nephews and nieces stand in form waiting to get pounded with sweets! Emerson caught on pretty quickly! 

I wish you could enlarge this picture! It is of my brother-in-law standing next to a ladies rear end and her shorts read "Who Cut the Cheese?" Look how happy he is to be in this picture! HA!

The old fire engine comes roaring down the street blowing it's siren and spraying water. Don't you love how Wes is using our child as a shield! Let me just remind you what my husband does for a living.......

After the parade most people attend a program held in the LDS church about various pioneers and their trek out west. After the program there is a picnic in the park, games for the kids, volley ball tournaments, a rodeo and golf tournament. SO many choices!

Later in the evening, there is a talent show in the old log gym. I love going to hear the talent, but also just to be in the old log gym. It is such a cool building and I love to sit there and think of how exciting it must have been to attend a basketball game there, gym class and dances! 
The sound is never very good and it is always about 100 degrees in there, but I love it!  

We woke up and got ready for the part of the trip that I was most anxious for! The Big Horn Mountains! I love these mountains with every fiber of my being and have so many good memories of the countless days spent camping here! If there was one thing I could say about what I miss most about home, it would be this! 

Off the highway, there is a hidden spring that shoots fresh ice cold water out of it! We always fill up the coolers and water jugs here. I have never tasted such good water in all my life!

It has been a very wet year on the mountain so the wildflowers were out in all their glory and it was so lush and green everywhere! It was beautiful!

This guy came into our camp. He wasn't really invited and I think he was a little embarrassed, so he decided to leave! Thank goodness!
We went fishing not too long after setting up camp. We caught some of the tiniest fish you have ever seen! It was still a lot of fun and hey, it's not how big it is that matters, just that fact that you got something! This was my nephew Nick's first successful fishing trip!

It rained on us while fishing and it sure made for pretty scenery! I'm telling you, this place is magical!

Later in the evening, right at dusk, my sister, Nick and I went for an ATV ride. It was probably the highlight of my trip! To see the mountain in this fashion is incredible! We saw a lot of wildlife and even had a moose run along side of us down the road like it was playing with us! A little scary, but more just hilarious!

We woke up nice and early and had a big breakfast with my 2 aunts and uncle. I love a big breakfast on the mountain! We had to eat a lot to build up the energy for our big hike!
Bucking Mule Falls! The sign said 2 miles, but I am pretty sure it was more like 6! We have all done it several times but none of us remembered it taking as long as it did! I think it was 2 miles the way the crow flies, not the way Amy walks! It was worth every step! The view is breathtaking! The drop is nearly 500 feet! 

Our little family! Emerson fell asleep as soon as we got there and Wes being the trooper of a dad that he is, carried him the whole way back to the car. 

When we got back to camp, the clouds have moved in and it was starting to snow! WHAT??? Yep snow! We would have liked to have stayed one more night but we were not prepared for snow and had to take our journey elsewhere! We drove into Sheridan, Wyoming where more of our relatives live and we stayed there for the night. Warm and dry!

My uncle lives right outside of Sheridan and works for a peculiar and extremely wealthy man who raises Falcons. Why...who knows? My uncle's job is to raise quail and pigeons that are to be used as food for the falcons. By doing this, he gets a nice paycheck and a free home. A pretty nice set up if you ask me! 

My uncle lives on a beautiful piece of land! This old barn is right out his front door! It looks nice in a photo, but it smells something fierce inside!

This is my uncle's bunk house that Wes, Emerson and I stayed in. It was also where I got the best night's sleep on the whole vacation! 

My uncle took us to the barns where he works. It was really neat to see all the birds, but sad just the same knowing they would just grow up to become devoured by a hungry bird of prey! 

A tiny little quail in my palm! I wanted to take him home and save him!

Fattening up! 

When I say "raised" I literally mean it! He is with these birds from egg to falcon belly! 

We later strolled the Main Street of Sheridan. The women did a little shopping and the men toured the legendary Mint Bar and the Lariat Museum! 

This was the last of our trip. We had such a good time and I really didn't want it to be over. Every day was full of some amazing experiences and everlasting memories...ones that I will take with me for the rest of my life. It was a trip full of love, beauty, reminiscing and learning. I miss it already and would go back and do it all again in a heartbeat!

Friday, August 7, 2009

MT and Beyond - Part 3

There are so many parts to this trip! I keep thinking I am almost done, then I look at my pictures and see so many more fun things to cover! This blog topic will be over soon, I promise! I realize that it may be boring to most of you, but I have to get in on here for when I print my book out at the end of the year. Sorry!
The whole gang finally arrived at my grandparent's house and we were all reunited again! My sister and her family drove up from Utah, my brother and his family came down from MT and my dad, Wes and my nephew drove up from UT after making a few stops along the way to fly fish!

We started the day by driving into Cody, Wyoming and touring the historic town. We stopped at the Buffalo Bill Cody Dam. It is so amazing to see and it actually takes your breath away at first! This is not a good place to visit if you are afraid of heights!

I am so glad the men in my family all get along....quite well, obviously!

I am also glad to see my honey after being apart for a week!

This is a view from 400 feet above the river! On the other side of the dam, the water is only about 15 feet below my feet! So amazing! And yes, we did spit over the edge and watch it fall! Who wouldn't?

Of course we had to try some of the "merch" on! How do we look? Don't knock it...I may have picked up a few Christmas presents while I was here!

There was over 700 sq. feet of miniature scenes depicting the history of the town and surrounding valley. It was really interesting and it made me want to climb in the glass rooms and play with them all like a little kid!

After the museum, we made a stop at the Firework Outlet! Stocked up on some pretty sweet stuff! Stuff that is probably illegal in the rest of the 49 states!

Of course we had to go into town and do a little shopping and get ice cream! I think it is a necessity to stop and buy an ice cream cone when you are on vacation! It's like checking out the bathroom at a fancy restaurant - you just have to do it!

We walked over to the historic Irma Hotel and watched the Gunfighter's skit. The performances were mediocre, but the experience was priceless! It was fun to watch and definitely different from anything we have around here!

These are the bad guys!

Nice photo op with the kids! Thank you gentlemen!

It was a great ending to a great day. I love it when my day is packed with fun activities, family and fun! Only 4 days left of this vacation!

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

MT and Beyond - Part 2

I really have to get this trip posted! I have been so busy this week, but here are some photos from day 2-6 of the vacation!

Day 2: We went to church (late!) and were able to see so many friends from my home ward/stake where I grew up. How I love to catch up and see how and what people are doing after 15 years! After church, my mom and I went on a drive to see how the city has changed with all the new home and business developments. Wow - it has changed A LOT!  We then went back to my brother and his family's house and had a big BBQ!

Day 3: Woke up and went to Granny's Attic, thrift shopping, Gainans and then the mall. Bought some great treasures at the antique store for projects from this and a great sweater that made me a little excited for the fall! Is that bad?

(Granny's Attic. Approximatly 30,000 sq. feet of antiques goodness! It takes quite a bit of time to go through it all! )

After shopping we said goodbye to my brother, Shon and his family for a few days and headed south. Cowley, Wyoming (Population 604) is home to my grandparents and many childhood memories. I love this home and this tiny town with all my heart!

Day 4: Woke up and took a walk with my grandparents, my mom and little E. My grandfather told me stories of the town's history and it's people. I loved every minute of it!

This is the school that my mom attended. Next to it is a log gymnasium where my mom would go to watch and cheer on her school's team! Go Jaguars!

After the walk we just relaxed on the big front porch and ate popsicles. It was the kind of day you didn't want to end. It was so peaceful!

Day 5: Pretty relaxing day! Got ready and went and hit the "Big City". Lovell, Wyoming (population 2,281) is just 5 miles away and has a few more things to entertain us. This is the town where my father grew up in and is the home to some more relatives and loved ones. We made a stop at the local fabric store. I always make an effort to go to this store when I am town because the selection of lace, trim and notions is unparalleled! They have things you just can't find anywhere else and I feel like a kid in a candy store!

The rest of the day was spent playing the in the yard, more porch sitting.....

...and picking apples from the huge tree on the side of the house! Best sour apples on this side of the Mississippi!

We ended our day with another walk around the town and enjoying the 70 degree temps! Another day completed in the sweet embrace of Cowley!

Day 6: This is the last day we have of laziness, peace and quiet until the crowds start rolling in tonight! We decided to go back to Lovell to visit some more stores since they were closed the day before.

We stopped at The Hen House - A Place for Chicks! Lovell's economy has been hurting for decades and most of the stores on Main St. have been vacant so seeing this hidden gem was so nice to see! It is a great store and I hope the people in the town support it and keep it going!

Next we went to the famous Queen Bee Gardens! They make and ship honey, candy and confections all over the world. They have quite the production here and it was fun to see them making all the candy that day. They were kind enough to give us a free sample!

We returned back to my grandparents home to enjoy some homemade carmel rolls and wait for the rest of my family to drive in to meet up with us for the next chapter of the vacation!

To Be Returned....