Bright Ideas Book Giveaway

Bright Ideas book is filled with recipes, crafts, and activity ideas. It's a full color hardback book with lots of photos and visual interest.

Activities and crafts for the next big holiday, July 4th, include:  Skipping Stones, Saving Good Bugs, The Perfect Knot, Thumb Puppets, Signalling with mirrors, etc.  The theme is, Summer at the Lake.

Recipes for Independence Day include, Patriot Cake, Caterpillar Ice cream Cake, Ladybug Cupcakes, Quilt Cake, Star Spangled Crispies, Pretzel Sticks (chocolate covered), Cookie Logs, and Kudos Beach Pails.

The giveaway is open to USA residents, 18 years of age and older, family members should enter as one person.  Entry is a piece of cake, pun intended!

Mandatory 1 entry for following me publicly on Google Friend Connect.
Then, 1 entry each per sharing this giveaway, for instance on your blog, twitter, facebook, etc.

Let me know in the comment what your following name is on GFC.  For each additional entry, please leave a comment with your sharing info.

I will post the winner's name on the blog and send an email.  The winner should respond within 48 hours, if no response, a new winner will be selected.  Good luck!

ETA:  The GFC Follow Blog button is newly added because the regular Follow link is not working or working only some of the time.  Click the GFC Follow Blog button to link up, thanks!  GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED, THANKS FOR STOPPING BY.

Sunday Straphanger Wales

A little Sunday afternoon walk with my uncle was actually an eight mile roundtrip saunter over fields, down leafy lanes, past horses, sheep, and cows.  Climbing over stiles was a new experience for me.  I kept asking if it was okay for us to be walking over fields where animals were grazing.  The answer of course, was it was okay, and permitted, because some of these are, "Public Footpaths" in Britain.

We minded the rights of the land holders and kept out of the way of the animals.  Some of them found us, or my camera, interesting.  Not raised in the city, nor the rural country, but having known both, I thought this was going to be fun, messy, and memorable.  Since I tried to watch where I stepped, messy didn't become a problem.


After the walk got to be too tiring for my uncle's granddaughter, she hitched a piggy back ride a few times.  His grandson wanted to make friends with the horses and he had that enthusiasm that was good to remember. 

Luckily for us, the famous Welsh rain held off for most of the walk and we were only sprinkled with a few rain drops for a minute or so.  Back home, feet up, to enjoy hot cocoa and biscuits!    

Remember Always Memorial Day

Memorial Day 2011

They've crossed the threshold and we won't see them again for a while. 
Never forgotten. 
Honored through sacrifice.

What's Doing Wednesday? A Love Story Places Aceo

Washed  the fabric I purchased for the embrodiery designs.  Bought some more hoops at the thrift store.  Naughty me, I bought more buttons, too!

I wish I could have the energy of one of those statues with eight arms, then I could really have lots of projects going at one time!  Instead, I'm a dreamer, wish I was here

 by the seaside with family and friends. Years later, I'm still in love with this place.  That's me in the photo image.

This aceo has been in progress for far too long, I guess I don't want to see how this love story ends.  One day, soon...   Is there a place you can't get out of your mind?

Sunday Straphanger Stonehenge

Big rocks set on a wide and open plain.  Doesn't sound too interesting, yet Stonehenge fascinates, perplexes, and endures.  Round and round we walked, circling the stone circles, getting a feeling for the size and scope of the mysterious rocks. 

It was a long drive from where we were staying in Wales, and we didn't stay long enough to suit me.  Another good memory from that day was the drive through Bath where first gear in the rented car finally gave out in the middle of a lighted intersection and people came to give us a push. 

The man kept telling me to put the car in reverse, unfortunately, that wasn't a working gear either.  We hadn't even made it halfway there, and the car was going to be a problem all day long.  I just couldn't park anywhere I had to back out (this idea has stayed with me for some reason) and I had to go a bit faster on the gas, since this was a manual transmission with no first gear.  Fun memories!

We did find a side street with parking tailor made for the car and happened upon a sweet cafe.  I had the fruit pie of the day and it was delicious.    When we finally  returned to Wales and to the car rental place, the man who rented us the car admitted that the car had been having problems.  Well, now he really knew it had problems, I was so tired I couldn't be mad and didn't want it to spoil my trek through the hills, over the river, and on to Stonehenge.

My Surprise Front Page Aceo on Storenvy

Screen shot of the home page with my ACEO, "Houseguest." (circled)

Should have been sleeping, instead I'm up doing paperwork, sorting, bill paying, etc.  I clicked over to Storenvy's home page and found my aceo!  Who can I wake up now and tell at 3am?  Wanted to share...

What's Doing Wednesday? Alabama Collage Aceo

See Completed ACEO in Shop
Anybody from Dothan, Alabama?  I've been to Anniston and Birmingham and drove through to see Mother Angelica's EWTN.  It was a really hot day in northern Alabama, we went to the gardens and in the chapel for a while, but we had our dog with us and we went in one at a time, never leaving our dog in the car- way too hot!

I've never been to Dothan, we talked about going that far south, but changed direction.  How did it fare after Hurricane Katrina, does anyone know?  Hope it is flourishing and doing well.

What You Said Wordle Cloud

Have you tried Wordle ?   This is what happened when I put in my blog address and the software made this, you can also delete words by right clicking on them, this will change the shapes you select or choose randomize and the software will make all the choices for you.   Choose fonts, colors, and layout directions, too.

Sunday Straphanger Rainy Wales

I'm under the weather here with lots and lots of rain and thunderstorms.  I remembered this postcard showing a happy(?) family getting their photo taken on a trip to Wales (noted for raining often there) and decided to show you.

It's now too muddy to work in the yard.  Last week we went from 30's at night with a frost that took all the forsythia blooms, to 80's, to 60's and it's muggy throughout!   The grass and the dandelions are growing like gangbusters. 

Robins, males I presume, are attacking our cars with their droppings and we are having to hose them (the cars, not the robins) down even with all the rain, their presents remain!  I see the robins pecking at their reflections in the car windows, too.  It must be some territorial mating game but, hey, don't they know glass from feathers?!   I covered the outside car mirrors with bags to stop the birds from seeing their reflections and that helped a bit.  But, the side windows and windshields are still in the Bullseye!  Yuck!!!

Still, we are not having the horrible times that many thousands of people are having due to the Mississippi River flooding and the tornadoes.  I hope that they get some help and some relief and lots of it very, very soon.

What's Doing Wednesday? Pop Art Puffin Aceo

See Completed ACEO in Shop

He's fierce looking, the Tufted Puffin, yet hearts are a thumping, beat beat beat, swoon and still loudly thumping for him.  He's so debonair looking- striking in his black and white plumage and look at that nose!

I like black and white animals, films, and old photos.  The old tv shows are a treat to watch, especially the old "live" plays the networks sometimes produced.  Now, what did I do with my old stuffed panda?  Where's my little zebra?  Got to find those some day...   Do you have a favorite animal?

What's Doing Wednesday? Aceo

Completed ACEO in Shop
The effect of all of the upheaval and decluttering must be showing in this aceo and a few others I have made with similar geometric images.  Achhh  I have to get back to something calmer, soon.  Like candy and cake...

How about one of those gorgeous cupcakes and cute toppers I keep seeing on, "The Krafty Cupcake" blog?  She has an outstanding range of edible cupcake toppers, at first I thought they were only paper and paint, they are so delicious looking.  Also, Sue has an etsy shop.

Check it out here: The Krafty Cupcake

World Trade Center Remembrance and Statue of Liberty

I thought of what the World Trade Centers used to look like when the news came that the evil one had been killed.  For years, I did a lot of driving on the NJ Turnpike and couldn't stop to take photos of the buildings, but I would look at the WTCs for as long as I could, in the rear view mirror, or coming towards them, I don't know why, but I wanted to remember them, obviously this was before the attacks, before the taliban, before al quaeda, before all the misery of September 11, 2001.

This oldest photo shows the WTCs at the tip of the island.  This photo was taken with my little old plain camera, no digital or 35mm back then and was shot from the observation deck at the Empire State Building.

This is one of the WTC buildings taken from standing on the sidewalk.  I wanted to go inside, it was a Saturday and the building was fairly empty.  My husband didn't understand why I wanted to go inside, he worked in the Wall Street financial area, so these buildings didn't faze him, they were ordinary sights.  I went in for a walk around the lobby area.

Here you can see the WTCs behind the back of the Statue of Liberty.  She's giving a salute to all those who perished on September 11, 2001 and since, in the cause of freedom. 

Take that and stick it in your cowardly cave.   I surely hope the news is true.

Sunday Straphanger Tintagel Castle

Stacked slate and stone walls.
This is third in a series of posts on Sundays focusing on some places I've been to or of something that's caught my eye.  Today features King Arthur's country, Cornwall, England (although the Welsh and the Scots have also claimed him as theirs.)  Hope you like this post on Tintagel Castle.

This photo doesn't show just how steep and long the climb to the top to reach Tintagel Castle, really was.  There was a Land Rover service you could pay to take you to the top and back down again, paying in each direction.  To save ££s we climbed, it was slow going with lots of Warning Signs!   "Steep, Slippery, and Treacherous!"  (It was.)  I remember signs saying that we were climbing at our own risk. 

Well, okay, the signs  repeatedly warned us, even saying to go back and take the car service.  We didn't take the car and climbed upwards. Out of breath and needing a rest, it was worth the trek, the views to the water below, were sumptuous.  On the walk down the mountain, a few curse words were uttered by our friends who said next time they would pay for the ride!

"I am Arthur!"
Have you seen the movie, "Camelot?"  Well, I'm only going to have one chance I thought, so walking through the doorway in the photo on the left, I yelled out, "I AM ARTHUR!" Richard Harris as King Arthur shouted that out in the movie, and I did it here, but without a beard, crown, or his accent.  Ha! 

I had to do it, eyebrows were raised and my husband and friends were a bit unnerved and a couple of tourists looked puzzled, but I wasn't going to regret not doing that in the moment, on the mountain top in the mist on that September day where ancient ruins and mythical and real characters used to live.   It's a breathtaking place, not just for the steep climb, but for the views and the history around you.  You don't have to look through glass cases, you can touch the walls, sit on them, and dance around if you are in the mood.

Castle ruins

King Arthur was born sometime around the mid 400's and Tintagel Castle was built in the 1200's on the site of a monastery.  The present ruins are made up of several forts, castles, and buildings.

On the edge looking down at caves

Pirate caves at low tide are safe but otherwise, drownings?  I had no desire to get caught in the cave when the tide came back in, so with the timing not quite right we enjoyed the mountain and the views below.

You can go into the caves for a look around, one is named, "Merlin's Cave." 

Rocks, cliffs, churning waters and the Celtic Sea beyond.

I feel refreshed by the open waters, it's no wonder I want to visit it again.

Hope you enjoyed this vista.