Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Short-Straw Bride -- Book Review for Bethany House Publishers

I loved this book!  It grabbed me right at the beginning and kept me going and wanting to know more about their lives and relationships. I really want to know more about the rest of the family and hope there are more books coming about them.  The early years of the 19th century are one of my favorite times to read about. And if you enjoy that time period, you are really going to enjoy this book. 

It spoke to me on more than one level. The story was not only full of action and clean romance it made me think about my relationship with God. I'm so often wanting to do it my way, not God's way. I don't often ask myself, What would God not want me to do? And I find it so easy to erect walls and fences with big gates around myself that keep me and God inside of a box when He really wants me to step outside and let others in.  This was a wonderful reminder to take a chance, rethink the boundaries I've set for myself and God, and just love someone.

I hope you will pick up a copy of this book, Karen Witemeyer found a way to share two people's hearts and how their faith in the Lord led them thru several misunderstandings to the start of a loving relationship. It will give you hope for your own relationships.

I received this book from Bethany House as a free copy to review.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Autumn Action

Most of my photographs are of my granddaughter who is almost always a moving subject. I'm sure that you experience this a lot with your favorite subjects also.
Here is a shot where we were trying on costumes but as soon as she would get one on and I would pick up the camera she would run around the couch and hide. She thought it was a great game.

You can see that the whole photo of her running is blurred, this is because I was shooting with a slow shutter speed 1/20 with an f/2.8. There are some cases where you want your subject to be blurred to show speed and movement, however that was not my intentions here, she was just faster than me.

If you want to keep your subject sharp while blurring everything around it, use slower shutter speeds (or landscape setting on point and shoot cameras) and pan.  To pan, move the camera with the subject to track your subject. Press the shutter button 1/2 way down to start the autofocus. Then while still moving with your subject, push the button all the way down when you are ready to take the photo. Keep tracking through the photo to make sure you don't stop before the exposure is complete.  

If you want to freeze your subject's movement without blurring your image, you need a fast shutter speed, such as 1/1000. Depending on the light you will need to adjust your f/stop to a wider setting because you will be cutting down the light that comes in through your shutter.

Where do you adjust the shutter speed on your camera? Look for the dial on your camera that says TV (time value) or S (shutter). In either of these modes you choose the shutter speed and your camera will choose the aperture for correct exposure.

In this photo, I was focused on the runners in the middle and you can see that I actually was able to capture them frozen with their feet off the ground. I'm still trying to accomplish this, with one of my dogs, I have dreams of that cute shot with their ears flopping and all their feet in the air while running.  Back to real life  :)    The runners were captured at 1/400, f/4, ISO 400. It was morning in a valley so there was not much sun yet, more the equivalent of a cloudy day.

So your challenge this month is to capture some action, either a freeze action shot like the runners or a shot where the subject is blurred and everything else is in focus. Then post it in the gallery with a link here to get your prize.  You must complete the challenge and post by September 30th.

Happy Shooting!

Saturday, August 18, 2012

This is the CAK challenge, so to be eligible for the prize, your layout must be comprised of at least 90% from NDISB collab, either from this month or prior months.

And now for the challenge, this month's CAK theme is best friends. So in honor of your best friend, you must double EVERYTHING you put on your page. Nothing can be on your layout once. If you put a flower on your page, you have to put it somewhere else too. Same thing goes for your photos and any papers you use, a besides a single background paper.

Find the Challenge HERE
Want to see what you are playing for?

Sunday, August 12, 2012

BOKEH, My Best Friend, Photography - 
Week 3 of http://www.ndisb.com new challenges. Come check it out there is a prize for every challenge completed!

Friday, August 3, 2012

New Things Happening at NDISB! Don't Miss It!!

Our new format and reward system for challenges is sure to keep you coming back for more! We have listened to feedback that you have provided and our goal is to make our challenges just a little bit more...'challenging' for you. (smiles) Each weekly challenge you complete will reward you with a special add-on or mini kit which will fully coordinate with our Customer Appreciation Kit for that month. And you will be able to get that Customer Appreciation Kit for FREE with only a $5 purchase. So, come and play with us, spend a minimum of $5, complete our 5 challenges, and you will have a massive mega kit - all for FREE.

Your challenge prize links for the challenges you successfully complete will be pm'd to you at the end of the challenge period each month. Because the challenges are staggered throughout the month, this will usually be the end of the first week of the following month.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Are you feeding your child's weaknesses and creating a bully?

It is our God given duty to train a child up in the way they should go.  Yet, as I look around me I see so many children and adults who are spoiled, demanding, temper tantrum throwing, violent bullies with an inflated sense of entitlement.  If their parents had disciplined them and given them boundaries immediately when they stepped over the line they would have created a safe and secure environment for that child to grow into a balanced, kind, and loving adult.  Weaknesses could be worked on and turned into strengths.  By not correcting bad behavior and just excusing it all the time you feed those bad behaviors and they become the dominate driving force that allows that child to bully everyone including the parent because they have been taught it is ok to treat people that way.

I know parents who won't take action because they are afraid they are going to loose the love and respect of their child.  What they don't see, but everyone around them do see, is that they do not have the love and respect of their child. They lost it by not enforcing boundaries and teaching that child that there are consequences to their actions.  I see grown "adults" bullying their parents and every time that "child" is negligent they blame it on the parent.  Then I see the parent fall into the role of victim. They make excuses for the "child" and start saying about how they (the parent) are responsible for the situation.   What a load of Crock!   That is classic abuser and victim mentality!

I used to say I never understood why people stayed with abusers and condemn them, until it happened to me.  I was fortunate in that I had been raised to believe I was better than that. I escaped, it wasn't easy and took time and the support of my family but, I learned my lesson and got out. I heard the voice of the Lord whisper to me constantly that the relationship I was in was wrong and toxic and damaging to everyone around me. My abuser isolated me and beat me up and worse.  But, because of the strong presence of the Lord in my life and a family who prayed for me and helped me as soon as I asked, I became stronger, I have empathy for those caught in toxic relationships and are being abused. I recognize abusers and victims and am often able to give them some encouragement that  will bring them closer to becoming free and follow the path God has called them to walk. This does not mean I have sympathy for them or tolerate toxic people in my life.  Because, I absolutely have no room for those type of people.

One of the things an abuser will do is take the object of their "love" and spread seeds of doubt about all the other people in their lives. They will start to doubt what they know about those who really love them.  On the surface an abuser is very charming and charismatic, you are drawn to them and don't even realize that they have taken over and are now controlling your life.   I am now seeing this take place in the lives of people I care about. It breaks my heart to see it.  I'm praying and fighting for them. I will see them fulfill the Call of the Lord on their lives!

On a lighter note, here is a photo of Shorty who recently placed in a glam pageant.  Not really, just a bit of photo fun, but, he was truly a good sport about it.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Pray, Talk, Beg and Cry

Because of a situation that has been on-going for several years in our family, I have lost respect for the most important person in my life.

I've talked, cried, prayed and begged for this person to step up and do the right thing. However, it is easy to take me for granted. It is safe to ignore me and not confront this other situation because my love is a sure thing and I don't cause as much trouble as this other situation. I now do not want to be around the one person I love most. We don't have much of a relationship at all because this other situation has been allowed to consume everything.

I know that I am not even close to the top of my VIP's list, I might be #10. Have I reached a point in life that because of circumstances I no longer want fellowship with my VIP?

All of this has given me an inkling of how much the Lord would like to spend time with me. Is this how the Lord feels about me? While I tend to turn to God in times of fear and adversity He is not first in many areas of my life. Am I apathetic in my desire to spend time with the Lord and only consumed with external situations? Do I take the Lord and His Love and His Grace for granted? Do I think I can treat the Lord and my loved ones any way I want and give them attention only when it is convenient, because I'm covered by Grace. How long do I think I can continue in this manner without correcting my behavior before the Lord allows evil to come into my house to get my attention?

It is spending time with the Lord for no real reason, but just because you want to, that allows you to hear God's voice.  You can't hear God's voice as easily when you are always in crisis or panic mode. You can pray and pray but if you don't listen then take the appropriate actions you have been told to do take, nothing will change.  Has the Lord spoken to you in that still small voice and you've ignored Him? Has He then had to resort to try speaking to you through those close to you and you've ignored them?

There comes a time when one must take a position that is not safe, politic or popular but you must take a stand because the Lord says it is right.  Will you let your household be destroyed because it was the easy path to take? When you follow God, He will bless you but when you don't follow God you will loose ownership of the land.  Will you loose everything for the sake of expedience?

On a lighter note, here are a couple photographs from 2 photo sessions with one of the joys of my life.

Friday, July 6, 2012

coupon confusion

Sorry for the confusion on the coupon, please try this download:
I've also fixed the coupon for you.  I do apologize and hope everyone will forgive my error.  So you now have two options to get the digi kit.  I hope one or the other will work for you.
I know it seems like it is not free because you go thru paypal but it is free there will be a place for the code and you will not be charged.  I have not have any luck lately with off store sites to provide downloads, So I have to do the freebies this way.  Have a great Summer! 

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Summer Fun Digi Diva's Blog Hop July 6th - 8th

 To download this Kit click HERE use this code PKDigiDivas when checking out with paypal and you get this bit of summer fun for free but only until midnight July 8th.
 I would love it if you would follow my blog and "like" my face book page found here.  Every so often there is a little something special on my FB page for fans, you never know what it will be. Same here for my blog, not only will you find out what it is like to live in a forest on the side of a mountain in Arkansas but you'll find my digi scrapping, art, and photography adventures, plus rants & raves. 

Ya'll Come back Soon!

Stop 2 - Pam Meeks
Stop 3 - Tonya Love
Stop 4 - Michele Pouliet
Stop 5 - Charly Lyons
Stop 6 - Melissa
Stop 7 - Elaine Anjos
Stop 8 - Yvonne Michelle
Stop 9 - Kelly Sill
Stop 14 - Jeanie Dickinson  You are going HERE
Stop 15 - Michelle Single
Stop 16 - Lucy O’Malley
Stop 17 - Vicki Robinson
Stop 18 -
Shayla Trimble
Stop 19 -
Emily Albrecht
Stop 20 -
Anna Janise

Monday, July 2, 2012

This morning, I glanced out on the deck and amid the construction debris I saw what I thought was a big round rock.  Now this is weird and I wish I'd taken a photo but I was so alarmed that I forgot and rushed out to rescue a large box turtle that was turned on his back. His little head was stuck out and he seemed so upset at his predicament. He or She hissed at me as I picked him up to place him back on the ground right side up.  Never having had a turtle hiss at me before I almost dropped him. I know he was scared but the hissing was soooo ungrateful.

The real mystery is how he got up on my deck.  At it's lowest point it is at least a foot from the ground and I don't think turtles can climb. My guess is that Mr. Fatso picked him up some where and brought him up on the deck.  For those of you who don't know Mr. Fatso is our pleagle, pitbull, lab, beagle mix. He also has more than one name, My husband calls him Duke and he has a secret name but he answers to Mr. Fatso.  I did notice him the day before rooting around in the rocks that are scattered around the deck.  How the turtle survived without damage is a miracle because our dogs can take out an armadillo without breaking a sweat.

Want to see a photo of Mr. Fatso then head over to my facebook page he's my personal page header.
Are we friends?  I'd like to be and if you haven't liked my business page, you are missing out on little gifts that I leave there.

Here is one of my latest paintings. the size is 4' x 4' price $600.00

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

A lovely gift from a lovely lady, Cathy Purcell

Don't you just love going to the mailbox and finding letters or packages?  It is always so exciting to find something that is not a bill or an advertisement trying to get me to sell my friends updated satellite packages!

I recently had one of these lovely experiences. In my mailbox was this wonderful package that when I opened it I immediately started thinking of the ocean.  It had that color of blue that I associate with cool days at the beach and little seashell accents on the card with a real starfish that I can add to my collection of shells. I was immediately feeling a little bit of peace and I hadn't even opened the package all the way to see what was inside.
Can you guess what was inside?  Have you already been to Cathy's web site and seen her scarves?  Well, my scarf is one of her hand painted 100% silk, she uses a Shiboni type of technique that makes it easy to care for. All you do is hand wash in cold water, line dry and iron on a silk setting.  Her scarves have gone through at least 3 washings at various stages so you don't have to worry if it get's wet! And it says forest to me!  I live in the middle of a forest on the side of a mountain and she so thoughtfully did a little research on me to see which of her designs would make a special gift just for me.  If you have not checked out her web site and gotten one of these wonderful scarves, I suggest you run, not walk over there right now.

If you are following the blog hop chronologically then you should have come from here and you are headed to the next stop here.  If at any time you get lost just come back to my page and click on the list below to get you where you need to go.

On this blog hop I have added a little freebie below that you can download and the instructions are in the post below this one.
Now, I have a SECOND freebie just for those of you on this blog hop if you go to my facebook page and LIKE my page, click on the freebies my tab and you will receive a set of 3 textures that you can add to your photos.  Instructions on how to use them are included.  There is an expiration date to the coupon so don't delay.

Thank You for participating in this extravaganza of creativity! If you would enjoy looking at my web site you can find my art  Here.

Liz Bradley

 You Came From Here
You Are Here
You are going Here

Stacey Curry

A Little Gift for You 

You can find both designs HERE as a little gift just for you.

I've used 4" x 4" tiles that are recycled from a bathroom remodel. I cleaned the edges up of extra grout by rubbing them on a concrete block, which is a lot faster than trying to scrape it off with a knife. Thanks David for the idea! Then I washed the tiles and laid them out on brown paper to protect my table top and painted a coat of mod podge on the top using a foam (disposable) brush. I already had my designs printed on card stock and trimmed. Then I centered them on the top of the tile and spread another thin coat of mod podge over the card stock design.

Make sure to brush only once and only one way or your ink will run

I then just placed a fan to blow over the tiles and dry them a little faster.
I had 3 good coats of mod podge (drying between each coat) on my tiles then left them to cure over night.
I used felt that I had left over from another project and traced around the tiles then cut out the felt, remember you want to cut inside your tracing as you want the felt to be just a little smaller than the tile. I used hot glue but you could use whatever type of glue you like to adhere the felt to the back of the tile. You could use cork for the backs of your tiles also.
I then tied them with ribbon added the gift tag which I made with the leftover card stock from my printed designs and I have some lovely gifts for the ladies in my art club! I drew these designs in CS5 Photoshop and made the papers on the creating tile myself. Enjoy!

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Christian Graduates and God Saves Pam's Car


 Dad Craig, Christian, Grandpa Gene, Grandma Dot, Aunt Vicki
Christian entering the auditorium

Presentation of the Diploma by mom and dad.
Here he is the proud graduate!!!  William Christian Laessig has now graduated and has a job and a drivers license.  He had to have a full time job to pay for his insurance.  He plans on going to college.  YEAH! We are so proud.   
 Throwing of the Caps
Auntie Gale, Grandma Rose, Mom, Christian, Charlie
Mom, Christina and Ann Usher (Sailor's mom)
William Christian Laessig and Best Friend, Conner MacArthur

It has been a wild and crazy trip in order to get to KC for the graduation. I told David (DH) several days ago that I was going to take my car and he kept insisting I either drive one of his BMW's off the lot at Godfather's Pawn or even fly. Well, he finally got that I was going to drive my car so the day before I was to leave he finally popped the hood and found, no oil and the air filter had fallen off. Who knows how long that had been that way and how much longer it would have continued. Then he said I needed new tires but then the tires could wait until winter. So he then tried to adapt the part that didn't work and he had to get another part which he brought home and put on early Friday morning. So now I'm ready to go right?  We are now at Friday noon. I get in the car and head to the pawn shop to pick up some albums for Christian, as I pull into the lot my car then makes a grinding noise.  sigh... So David decides it is the brakes and now he has to pull it into the shop and replace the front pads and rotors, which will only take 1/2 hour.  Uh Huh! So 3 hours later I'm still waiting...  I call everyone and let them know I'm not leaving for a while.  So then we take the car for a test drive and now there is a funny noise in the rear.  So in the parking lot of the library, David gets out of the car and has me drive around and around hitting the brakes while he runs from side to side to try and determine where the sound is coming from.  Finally as a crowd gathers to see this funny site he decides it is the right rear brakes.  So back to the parts store and then to the shop to replace that one. Finally, I call everyone and say I won't see them and then my sister to say I wouldn't be there until late that night. All thru this I'm trying to contain my frustration and just think how this is God stopping me from having an accident or something worse. As I take a deep breath I am able to let it go and relax and set myself in the moment and know it is OK that I will not arrive until late.  I'm so glad God was watching and taking care of me.
The graduation was great with talks by friends and family about each graduate with slides shows of their childhood set to music. They had photo montages and cake and cookies then a break to set-up for the evening party.  Lots of wonderful food at the party, a DJ and dancing and great fellowship.  All in all a really cool graduation!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

This is my example of using a screen shot in my layout.

and Here
Post your layouts in the detour forum and in the contest and challenge gallery.

I know that some of you do not have Facebook so for you to receive your "little Hikers" just go back to the detour forum and post that you do not have facebook and I will send you the link.   Happy Traveling!

Here are some extra instructions on using screen shots, provided by one of our travelers with her permission.

 This set of frames is your prize for completing the detour. You will be sent the code after you post your layouts.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Challenge 4 - Recipe for ...

You will find this recipe in back posts with more complete instructions. David eats a minimum of a loaf of this bread every week. YUP! He is addicted!
Kit by Casey Massey - Happiness

Monday, May 14, 2012

Are You a Planter or a Weeder?

I've been working in my garden a lot, as it is that time of year to be planting. While on my knees planting little tomato seedlings, I had an epiphany. I enjoy weeding much more than I do planting. I found much more satisfaction from pulling weeds and tidying up than I did from putting those tender little plants in the ground and nurturing them. This probably says a lot about my personality. I am a black and white person I don't see lots of shades of grey in life.  I like really strong, straight out of the tube colors. I don't have fun with conventional activities and don't live well in the moment. I'm always thinking about what I need to do next. It is easy for me to see the glass half empty rather than half full.   ...sigh ...   If those of you who know me would like to add to this analyzation of myself, you know how to contact me. You may even see your comments added to this post. Here are a couple pictures of my garden.

Challenge #3 create a stamp ADSR7

Our Little Princes loves sparkly pink flip-flops.  This is Challenge #3 of the adsr7 race.  The challenge was to make a stamp, mine is the little flip flops by the title and in the bottom right corner.
Kit is by Carley's Digi Scraps - Tickled Pink
Sparkle Splatter is by Bernadette Hunt - Finishing touches - mini dazzlers

Friday, May 11, 2012

ADSR7 Detour #2 - Recipe for adventure!

It may be a little sad that my adventure was in creating a household cleaning product, but you gotta take what you can get.  Right?  If you follow me on Pinterest you'll find instructions on how to make this on one of my boards.  I have to say I've been trying out several of the cleaning tips and they are working.  I had spilled some grease on a little wool rug in my kitchen and it had been there a long time, so long that my husband said to throw it away.  But, I found a tip that said to let baking soda sit on the spots (which I did for about a week as I was too busy to get back to it) then with a clean white rag and vinegar and dawn dish detergent and hot water wipe it out.  It worked!  No more grease spots on my rug.
The digital kit used to make this layout is one of my own creations titled:
Live, Eat and Love Well.  Strings by fafBr and Arrow and Adventure by, By The Shore Designs.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

ADSR7 Detour #1 I Can See Clearly Now

This challenge was to create a layout using our favorite song. This has been a favorite of mine since it came out and never ceases to uplift me.
Digital Scrapbooking Kit by JellyBean Designs "When skies are grey"  Template by Scrappily Ever After, Grunge Template Bundle

Challenge 2 adsr7

This challenge was all about journaling. Your title had to be, "Because of..." but you couldn't use the word you.
The Kit is by Helena Jole and the Strings are by fafBr Designs

Monday, May 7, 2012

Challenge One

This is my layout for Challenge 1 of ADSR7.  You had to take a photo that had something wrong with it, you couldn't edit it but you could re-size it and then scrap it.  It's hard to tell but my foreground is blurred and the tree is in focus. That is not how I intended it but I still couldn't bear to delete the photo since the subjects are so dear to me and I love the "feel" of the photo.  Go check out the ADSR gallery over at http://www.ndisb.com to see lots of other ways to save iffy photos. 
credits: ornament and paper - conniecrook RAKMK   frosted photo frame - MCO

Friday, April 27, 2012

Lunch with a Friend

Don't you just love friends who no matter how long it's been since you've seen them, you just pick up right where you left off? I do! I see my friends so seldom since I live in a secluded area. It's a major deal to go to town, so I don't get to see my friends and have lunch or a movie much.  But, today one of my lovely friends called while I was in town and we got to have a little catch up time and eat a crisp fresh salad together.  And later I'll get in an hours worth of exercise with another lovely friend. I am so blessed!

Last night my Art and Soul group showed our collective works at the Chamber of Commerce's Business after hours.  Great Food, Great Company, Great ART!

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Freebie 4 U - Quick Page to introduce Digi Kit

By following this link and then adding this password, PKfarmQP to your check out you get this Quickpage free.

You don't need to purchase anything to get this but I hope that you will like Old MacDonald had a farm so much that you will add it to your cart.

Take a little time to explore Natural Designs in Scrapbooking they have some great events coming up and tons of fantastic digi goodness.

A little Love in the comment section or seeing your completed pages would be wonderful.

Pass the word, Freebie here but only for 2 weeks!

Monday, April 2, 2012

Hey, Everyone, check this out

One life on this earth is all that we get, whether it is enough or not enough, and the obvious conclusion would seem to be that at the very least we are fools if we do not live it as fully and bravely and beautifully as we can. –Frederick Buechner

Are you a dreamer?

Do you have ideas, dreams and a beautiful product to go with it?

Have you been putting off starting your own business?

Do you feel stuck in the online business you have already created?

Do you just need someone to take your hand and walk you through the process?

It is time to take yourself and your dreams seriously.

Let’s start at the beginning.

Join me for a three week journey in building a “Creatively Made Business”.

SOME of the topics we will cover …..

Setting up your business


Social networking

Promoting your business

Pricing and staying competitive

Photographing your product

Setting yourself apart

Growing your brand

Markets and shows


Reproducing your work

Keeping the books

Balancing home and creativity

I will share my journey

I will talk honestly about what worked and what didn’t.

I will talk about growing pains and when you will know it is time to expand.

I will talk about all the things I wish someone had told me before I started to manufacture my clothing and bags (all the mistakes I made too).

Each week you will hear from other guest business owners and they will share what they wish they would have known and give you their best piece of advice.

You will have access to a Facebook group so you can connect with other business owners (or dreamers) in the class.

Each week we will have a live chat where you can ask questions.

All sessions are recorded and available as videos for you to watch at your convenience. You will learn at your own pace and around your own schedule.

Growth, dreams and possibilities begin April 16th.

Registration is now open.

{class will begin April 16th and the classroom will be open for 3 months}

$48 for the course


Monday, March 12, 2012

Farm Digi Kit Now Availble


Here is a layout using the kit by Linda, one of the wonderful Creative Team over at www.NDISB.com

You can find it HERE

Old MacDonald Had a Farm

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Ruffled Tee Shirt Scarf

This is a simple scarf to make. Take a paper plate and trace around the plate on flattened and smoothed tee shirt, with a chalk pencil.

Then using scissors cut out circles.

Next, cut around inside of circle in about 2 inch borders, leaving a circle at the end.

Now when you stretch out each circle you will have a long strip. Divide the strips into two even piles. Gather them all together at the circle end and sew together overlapping about 2 inches this is the back of the scarf.

You now have a lovely ruffled scarf.