Have cornhole, will travel

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Okay, okay.  Before I start getting comments about the shocking nature of the title of this post, a “cornhole” is a beanbag toss.  Pure and simple.  I don’t know where it got that name.  (Maybe they used to use dried corn kernels to make the bean bags, but then they’d probably be called “corn bags”, wouldn’t they?)  Anyway, this cornhole set was build by my father-in-law for our Jill and Jill party.  It’s been making the rounds at various parties and family functions every since.  It was even used as a ruse to get my parents to their 50th Anniversary party (we have to use my dad’s truck to transport them).

The first photo was their original incarnation.  The theme of the party was the “Toes” song by the Zac Brown Band.  We even had PBR on tap.  It came from a couple days after we had first met.  My wife went to Country Fest and sent me a video of that song from the show.  It was one of the only country songs I even knew at the time.  In fact, in the on-line profile at the dating site where I met her, for musical tastes I wrote “anything but country”.  She loves country.  (I’ve actually recently been to my first Country Fest- and I survived it.)

(This cake has nothing to do with the cornhole theme of the post, but I had to share it.  It’s a cake that one of our bridesmaids had made for the Jill and Jill.)

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So, after the Jill and Jill the cornhole set sat in the basement for a while until I realized that it was such great entertainment for any party.  We dragged it out for our boy’s 8th birthday and I painted them sky blue.  I was going to put more a design on them, either an 8 or something Skylanders (the theme of the party) but I ran out of time.  (That’s probably okay, though, because he was much more interested in the bounce house we rented).

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Some friends have borrowed it on occasion, and we just used it again today for our church block party.  I spray painted the initials of the church on it:  “Trinity United Methodist Church“.  (As I was trying to mask the “M” with painters’ tape, I found myself wishing I was still a member of the United Church of Christ.)  I went with the sloppy look because the sign advertising the party has those block letters with the spray paint spilling over, too.  Image

Here’s the final version of their latest incarnation:

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And some good ol’ cornhole fun at the block party, with my wife, the referee:

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I ended up with a wicked sunburn, but had a great time.  Our boy got totally decked out in his balloon armor and I spent the rest of the afternoon holding everything so it wouldn’t pop while he played.

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I wonder how I’ll paint them next???

Not my favorite card ever

ImageSo, I made a card for a couple of reasons other than having to make a card for someone.  First reason: I needed to try my sewing machine on a non-buttonhole stitch to see if it was still working because I couldn’t get it to work on the buttonhole.  Second reason:  I wanted to make a wedding card for the Stampotique challenge theme of Weddings.  http://stampotiquedesignerschallenge.blogspot.com/2013/08/sdc113-wedding.html  The problem is, I don’t know anyone getting married in the near future.  That’s why, I think, I really don’t love this card.  I wasn’t making it for the someone.  My heart wasn’t really in it.

I went through my scrapbook sticker box and found a pad of velum wedding note papers and a sheet of black and white wedding-looking stickers.  I like either of them individually, but they don’t work too well together (the two blacks and whites don’t match, if that makes any sense).  Anyway, I sewed the velum onto a card with a fun stitch (not the best stitch for paper, but that’s one part of the card I actually like).  (Oh, and the machine does work, I just forgot to bring down the button hole sizing guide.)

I thought it still needed something, so I grabbed some really old silver craft dusting powder.  It’s not really powdery anymore, so I scraped the top a little with the blunt end of my brush and then used the brush end to put some on the diagonal corners.

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I remembered my fun with stencils lately, so I cut a heart out of some heavy cardstock and put a couple hearts on the inside.  I really wasn’t happy with the dusting on the front (I thought it was too dark) so I put more in the inside but I did it through a piece of tulle.  Now that I finally liked.

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What do you do with cards that you don’t love?  Do you still give them away?  Do you keep working on them until you do like them?  Do you scrap them altogether?  I’m not sure what to do with this one.  Oh well, you can’t win ’em all.

But here’s something you can win:  a new stamp set from Paper Smooches.  Check out their blog and comment for a chance to win.  http://papersmooches.blogspot.com/2013/08/august-dt-blog-hop.html  Then, join in their super fun blog hop.  So much inspiration, so little time!

Update:  After sleeping on it, I woke up in the morning thinking I should just try taking off the heart sticker.  That was the biggest thing that I didn’t like.  And (what do you know?) it peeled right off!

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How do I use this thing? (and some ICADs)

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I came across this 3D stencil in one of my (many) boxes of craft supplies and thought… “What the heck?”  One of the prompts for last week’s ICAD Challenge was “ivy”, so what better time to experiment.  I recently started playing with gesso, and figured that would be as good as anything to stencil with, and then figured I could just paint over the relief for a cool design.  Not.

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The gesso (surprise, surprise) seeped under the stencil, despite at my best attempts at taping and holding it down.  I ended up with a bunch of big blobs.  So, I thought, maybe I can just trace the stencil on top of the gesso like any other normal stencil.  Of course, it’s not a normal stencil, so when I tried to trace inside the openings the foam kept moving and that was a disaster, too.  I tried a trusted Sharpie, but it didn’t work too well on top of the gesso, so I just resorted to painting inside the stencil as well as I could (given my level of frustration and disappointment at this point) with my handy-dandy acrylic paint.  I threw a random quote on it from my collection and was about to call it a day.  But…Image

I had all this paint left over on my plate and this frustrating foamy stencil that I still didn’t know how to use.  So I did a little more experimentation and used it as a STAMP.  And I LOVED it!!!  I made two more cards with it that way.

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And then I just wanted to use up the rest of the paint, so I did the one below.  I used the sewing theme again (which I love), and experimented with some new, metallic thread and a zig-zag stitch.  So, here’s the last one in this “series”:

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So, I guess that what started out as a big mess turned out okay.  It usually does.  (And, if it doesn’t, that’s okay, too.)

And here are some other bloggers who are doing ICADs (it seems like the numbers are growing like weeds- really pretty, interesting weeds).

http://livingadreamlife.wordpress.com/2013/06/25/icad-25-happy-birthday-eric-carle/  – I had no idea it was Eric Carle‘s birthday… I’m seeing a Carlesque ICAD coming up in my future.

http://sitscrapandrelax.wordpress.com/2013/06/25/icad-20-24/  – I just came across this blog and love it.  This series is really neat, she calls it her “She Art”.  The last two are portraits she learned how to do by watching an instructional video on YouTube.  How cool is that?!

Oh… and how DO I use that thing???