Tag Archives: arts and farts and crafts

Origami Envelopes: In Rainbows

After almost 5 months in the works, here are the wedding thank-you notes in their final form – signed, sealed and now in the hands of the Postal Service:

Since I can’t seem to manage to do anything simply (or in a timely fashion for that matter *ahem*), I decided I would make the thank-you notes from scratch, including envelopes, much like we did with our party invites.

When we sent our invitations out last autumn we also included an origami paper crane in each envelope:

to tie-in with the origami boxes we made to hold our favors:

As a means to bring this whole endeavor full-circle, now that the party is over, I also used origami paper to create the envelopes for the thank-you notes.

And it was pretty simple to do!

Watch… I’ll show you.

First, you’ll want to select a large (9 3/4″) square piece of paper (color side down):

Next, fold your paper into a triangle:

Take the top layer of the triangle and fold down to meet the center of the base:

Fold the right corner approximately 1/3 over to the left (it’s really hard to make them perfectly uniform so this part is somewhat inexact):

Then do the same with the left corner:

Fold the corner of your last fold (left flap) back onto itself so its edge continues the straight line made from the top right edge of the envelope:

Here’s where it gets a little tricky…

Now, take the point of the flap you just made and fold it toward the top corner of the flap:

Unfold this last fold, exposing the crease, as it is there to guide you through the next step:

Open the creased fold so it looks hollow inside and then “squash” the folds until you have a “sideways” square:

Fold the top point of the envelope down so that it meets about 3/4 of the way down your “sideways” square:

Then tuck that point into the sideways square; flatten the envelope by pressing gently on all the creased areas and PRESTO! – origami envelope:

I found that I needed to add some strategically placed tape around the bottom as well as over the tucked square in order to secure the envelope for USPS transit but if you just plan on using these for hand delivery or table cards or WHATEVER else, then your origami envelope is good to go!

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Fears

After leaving my job a few months ago I thought I would begin a new chapter in my life by filling my days with some much-needed relaxation and allowing myself the time to re-focus creatively and personally.

Instead I’ve been most successful at giving myself an endless array of shit for not being more artistically productive or inspired on a daily basis which makes for what I believe to be some pretty serious irony:

Fear #1

I will never be successful. At anything.

Much like my numerous failed attempts to learn to the guitar/piano/drums beyond plucking strings, poking keys, or banging on cymbals, I cannot seem to move past the point of frustration at figuring out new things which might allow me to find peace in being creative and possibly, somewhere down the line, entrepreneurial:

Fear #2

I will never finish anything that I start.

When I recently mentioned to the bee that I thought I might like to work in a library, he reminded me that most library work is on a volunteer-only basis:

Fear #3

Any and all discernible life-skills I have are at once impractical and completely useless when trying to support yourself financially.

Perhaps it’s because I stopped taking my  meds or the fact that I’ve been unemployed for a while that’s causing a momentous level of despair to creep into my life.

Either way, it seems my ability to differentiate between a justifiable cause for fear or worry against something which is completely fabricated by my damaged brain has never been worse.

But… at least I’m taking it all in stride:

Yep. Totally under control.

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Waterworld. Except subtract the part about water. And don’t expect any Kevin Costner references either…

Since Saturday morning we’ve been praying to the gods of water and early springtime thaw in the hope that one of them might hear us and grant us a taste of modern civility, in the form of luscious, glittering, watery water flowing from the taps once more.

Considering we’ve had a foot or more of snow on the ground for the last month, finding our pipes frozen was likely to have happened. I probably should have been expecting something regardless since I also managed to get two flat tires on two different occasions just since the new year, which leads me to ask:

For who?

For ME?! (presses hands to chest)

Oh, no… (fans hand out as though to say: I simply COULDN’T)

I mean…

I simply COULDN’T.

It wouldn’t be fair to all the other, less fortunate car tires with fully inflated rubber housing…

It seems only fitting that we should top it off with this now.

I mean, it’s not the WORST thing that could happen with the house. No, because the WORST thing that could happen probably-already happened to us last year. And it’s still nowhere near as bad as that time when we had crickets in our bed. Because I’m still not OK with what happened there…

I’ve been fine with not being able to do the dishes or brush my teeth using running water. I’ve learned to “spot clean” myself with baby wipes and de-crust dirty silverware with the leg of my sweatpants.

It’s been a lot like camping. Only a lot less fun.

I even figured out a way to make coffee!

Part one:

Collect some snow.

Part two:

Wait for it to melt.

Part three:

Make coffee?

Because of its “nature-y” ingredients I’ve taken to calling it Winter’s Blend…

But this post isn’t supposed to be about the merits of making snow coffee. It’s about how much it sucks using the toilet when you don’t have any running water.

It’s also been a really long time since we’ve had a proper discussion involving poop on this blog so here you go:

Saturday, 11:30 PM

me: *tummy gurgles* Oh. Um. Yeah...

I think I need to, you know, “go”. Don’t mind me, I’ll be right back…

the bee: Wait. Where are you going?

m: To the BATHroom. I have to “go”. You know, like “go” go.

b: Yeah, I get it but you can’t “go” in there.

m: (squints eyes, furrows brow) Whadaya MEAN I can’t go in there? Where am I supposed to go?!

b: My mom’s house, for one. If you run you could be inside in 10 seconds.

m: Excuse me, but I am NOT going over to your mom’s at midnight just to have to explain the reason for my visit is because I need to “drop something off”. UGGGGH! Embarrassing much?

b: Well, you can’t “go” in our toilet if we can’t flush.

m: (drops to knees and shakes fists) You can take away my toilet, bee… but you can’t take away my priiiiiiiide!!!

b: Oh, please… I’ve known you to use a trash can if you rea-

m: (lightbulb illuminates above head, eyes widen and finger points upward in excited victory)

*door slam*

b: (faces bathroom in disgust and horror)

*shouts* Just make sure you take it out when you’re done! *under breath* …you filthy animal.

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Free Stuff! Giveaways! RAH-RAH-RAH!!!

You may remember a few months back when I showed off an adorable crocheted clutch made by my dear friend Kate who has a fabulous Etsy store. Now she has an equally awesome Art Fire store where she sells many more of her handmade creations and she’s having a GIVE-AWAY!!!

Do you KNOW what that means?

Well, it means that all you have to do is head over here and leave a comment and that will put you that much closer to winning this crafty crochet chain link headband:

And what’s better than free stuff?!

Nothing.

Except getting paid to do nothing which I’m finding is a really difficult industry to break into…

So hurry on over and leave a comment! Drawing ends January 31st.

YAY!

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Filed under just a thought...

5 Reasons Why Grape Nuts is Better Than Your Favorite Cereal

1. It is a great source of fiber and basically guarantees a successful and expedient evacuation of the previous days meal, leaving you with extra bathroom time that you can use for things like filing down the 12 weeks worth of toenail you’ve been cultivating despite the imminence of “sandal season” in just a few short months.

2. It even tastes good soggy. Better even. Can’t say that about Cheerio’s. CAN you?

3. Grape Nuts are neither made from grapes or nuts which is good because I don’t like either of those things in my cereal.

4. Grape Nuts are excellent when used in arts and crafts type projects. When I was in Kindergarten my friend and I decided to give our school’s crossing guard Christmas presents. When I found out she was giving her a necklace from K-Mart, my demented little brain pumped itself full of jealous rage and concocted the cruelest retaliation imaginable: a vastly better gift than the one my friend was giving. I chose to take a piece of white printer paper, draw a heart on it, fill it in with Elmer’s Glue and sprinkle Grape Nuts on top of it. It was beautiful. It was the most beautiful and crunchy and almost entirely edible gift anyone ever gave anyone and I gave it to the crossing guard. My crossing guard. And she loved it. I think.

And finally, the most important point to be made of all the 5 important reasons chosen for this list:

5. Under no circumstances ever or anytime will anyone EVER chose to eat your cereal (Grape Nuts) when presented with any other option. Ever.

So what does all this mean?

Well, if you eat Grape Nuts, it means: You WIN! You should probably get an award. Made of Grape Nuts. I could make one for you, but then I would need someone to make mine so maybe instead of awards we should just clink our bowls of delight together and smile knowing our colons are better off than they were before we starting eating all this amazing cereal and start planning what we’re gonna do with all the extra time we’re gonna have after everyone we know is dead because our colons outlived them all. Even us. So really the plans we’re making are for our colons. Just our colons. Because we’re all dead.

*clink*

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Last Minute Halloween Costume Ideas for the Recently Unemployed and Habitually Underpaid

Halloween is right around the corner, kitty cats and if you’re anything like me you wait until the absoLUTE last-minute to decide what the hell you’re wearing for the big day. That is why I have constructed this brief, yet immeasurably helpful, guide to turning something everyday into something uniquely Halloween-y.

Be a hipster zombie!

First off, this works incredibly well if you already happen to BE a hipster. For one you can just say you’re going as a zombie and, for two, you already have enough v-neck t-shirts and skinny jeans to start your own sizeable army of ennui, so clothing yourself shouldn’t be a problem. If you happen to be the antithesis a hipster, fret not. Get thee to a thrift store, post-haste!

If thrift stores are out of your budgetary range for this season’s scare-fest think familial! Do you have grandpa? Grandpa’s have an EXCELLENT assortment of ironic hipster garb so if you’ve got one, watch him CLOSELY. Hipsters are lurking everywhere just waiting for the moment to strike and steal that oversized cable-knit sweater with the mothball smell that won’t come out.

Now for the zombie part. Get some red lipstick and dark eyeshadow and apply liberally to your face parts. Go for gaping head wounds and festering sores, blood dripping from the mouth and eyes will really set you apart from the other store-bought zombies. If you ARE a hipster, obtaining said face-paint should be rather easy since most hipsters live within yelling distance of their mommies anyway. If not? Real blood and bruises work just as well too.

Be a human lint-brush!

If you have a cat, like I do, then you know that cats shed copious amounts of hair. Usually on places like your clothes or bath towels so that when you go to dry yourself off after a nice hot shower you find yourself coated in a fine layer of sweet kitty cat fluff and dander. Since it is a well-known fact that cats enjoy sitting on a freshly dried set of clean clothes, first wash your clothes (choose dark colors if your cat is light-colored and vice versa if your cat is dark) dry them in the highest heat, set down on the couch, chair, bed or table of choice and let the magic begin!

Before you know it, Mr. (or Ms.) kitty cat will be snuggling and leaving their fur mark all over your freshly laundered! Once the hair transferral process is complete, commence wearing said outfit and off you go! You have become the human equivalent of a walking-talking lint-brush. Other party-goers won’t know what hit them! Unless they’re allergic to cats. Then your presence will basically be like a sucker punch to their sinuses.

Be a pile of leaves!

Where I live, the ground is currently covered with fallen leaves that will eventually just get collected into large trash bags or burned in autumn bonfires. I say: Why waste all that potential costume fodder by handing it over to the garbage gods?! It’s time to put to use all the crafting options around us.

Since dead leaves are like nature’s velcro, this is probably the easiest cheap Halloween costume to construct. Step 1: Put on some clothes. Step 2: Go outside and roll around in the leaves. The leaves will adhere to your clothes and hair with ease. It’s like the two of you were MEANT to be together this way. Once an adequate amount of rotten foliage is stuck to your person you are ready to go!

Now, for those of you who live in slightly more temperate climates during the colder months and don’t have fallen leaves readily accessible to your person, I suggest you then go jump in a lake. Or the ocean because you probably still can since it’s like 85 degrees wherever you are.

Assholes.

**********************************************

In other news:

A photo of mine was recently featured over at Indie Ink for their Autumn Writing/Photo Contest and I’m super proud and flattered to be included so make sure  you hit them up and check out all the awesome submissions!

Also…

A TRUE ghost story of mine has been published over at Midwestern Mama Holly’s blog. The past week on her site has featured real-life stories of the strange and paranormal from some of her readers and they be FREAKY. So, go forth! and be prepared to be scared!

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Crossing the Threshold

It is common knowledge that everything changes when you get married. You no longer live a life of singularity but, rather, one of SOLIDarity. You and me’s turn into us and we’s. And rightly so. You have embarked upon a journey full of petty fights and make-up sex.

Here are some things I’ve learned about marriage in just the last few days:

 

Talk is cheap. But more than that, talking at all is overrated. Once married, your brains magically fuse in such a way that you really no longer need to speak thoughts or requests to the other. Things are simply understood.

 

Sharing is caring. One of the most wonderful things about married life is sharing. Everything. From money to food to clothes to life’s pesky little responsibilities. Like who’s turn it is to call and order the pizza:

 

All bets are off. Did you have a particular arrangement in place for chores or a specific agreement that you made prior to your wedding day? Well if so, consider all that cancelled. Marriage is about equality and if not taken literally your wedded bliss will soon turn to a chaotic nightmare.

 

Humility and self-respect be damned! This means that you no longer need to leave the room to fart or pick your nose or scratch… anywhere! This also means that you can begin to use the bathroom with the door open. Now anytime is a good time to tell your spouse about every single thought that pops into your head.

In conclusion,  remember:

Love means never having to poop with the door shut… 

but maybe you should anyway.

Just to be safe.

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Filed under (me), just a thought..., the bee

Where Dreams Go To Die

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Filed under (me), work

Dear September,

I have never liked you.

I’m sorry if that hurts your feelings but it’s the truth.

You have always been the bearer of bad news. Throughout my childhood you were the constant reminder that summer was over and that school was about to begin and I think I’m not alone here when I say that’s totally shitty of you.

What is your deal anyway?

Are you Summer? Fall? Do YOU even know?

When I wake up in the morning I am cold and I need to wear a sweater and slippys just to go into the bathroom and brush my teeth. By midday in that same get-up? I’m sweating my balls off. To make matter worse, when nighttime rolls around I need to break out the sweater/slippy combo again.

You should probably think about making up your mind because your indecisiveness is making it extremely difficult to even dress myself.

Not cool, September. Not. Cool.

What’s even worse is what you bring in the way of seasonal allergens. For 11 months out of the year my ears/nose/throat does just fine thankyouverymuch save for the occasional cold but then YOU show up and I’m all itchy and scratchy and coughy and wheezy and runny and MISERABLE.

How are we ever supposed to make amends if you continue to slight me this way?

Is it because I’m not Jewish?

Clearly you have a preference for the Jews in the audience since you give them not one but TWO major holidays all within your date range. For every Hanukkah there’s a Christmas and for each Easter there’s a Passover but by the time we hit September it’s just:

Sorry folks! Nothing to see here. Feel free to enjoy this month but unfortunately you were not “chosen”. *wink wink*

I now know five people who have a birthday on the 10th of you. FIVE.  Are you trying to steal ALL the birthdays so you might have all the glory you selfish, selfish month?

Maybe we’re not supposed to be friends, September. After all, my favorite month is the one directly following your exit so it seems we may have a conflict of interest from the start. It’s cool though. I guess we’ll just have to accept that we have this mutual distaste for each other and try our best to be civil.

You know, for the sake of the other months.

Yours in resentment and disgust,

(me)

PS – a lot of that was the allergies talking. sorry if the preceding note was excessively cruel. you do have Labor Day which EVERYONE can celebrate so I guess you’re not all bad. just mostly.

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Pegs ‘R’ Us!

As you may already know, the bee and I are getting married in October. I have been full-on freaking out over most everything since both the ceremony and the family party/reception are on separate dates (yes, it’s like we’re doing DOUBLE the work) and both are almost 100% DIY but we’ve been trying to keep things level and sane by making the process as fun as possible. One of the BIGGEST elements of fun for us was getting ourselves PEG-I-FIED by Suzy at Naked Peggies

I was so totally impressed by the final product. I’m pretty sure she made us even cuter as wooden peg dolls then we ever could be in real life. Well, at least in my case… 

We first heard about Naked Peggies through Sending Postcards when they had their own peggies made in celebration of their nuptials

The peggies themselves can even be used as wedding cake or cupcake toppers

We decided to let ours live it up on our mantle where we intend to add peggies to the collection as our family grows. 

not a mouth, but a soul patch and a mole. respectively... (in case you just thought we have very specific and permanent dirt on our faces. because we dont. anymore.)

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Filed under (me), the bee