Sunday, December 16, 2012

Prayer for Newtown, CT (and all of us) : By Max Lucado

Dear Jesus,

It’s a good thing you were born at night. This world sure seems dark. I have a good eye for silver linings. But they seem dimmer lately.

These killings, Lord. These children, Lord. Innocence violated. Raw evil demonstrated.

The whole world seems on edge. Trigger-happy. Ticked off. We hear threats of chemical weapons and nuclear bombs. Are we one button-push away from annihilation?

Your world seems a bit darker this Christmas. 

But you were born in the dark, right? You came at night. The shepherds were nightshift workers. The Wise Men followed a star. Your first cries were heard in the shadows. To see your face, Mary and Joseph needed a candle flame. It was dark. Dark with Herod’s jealousy. Dark with Roman oppression. Dark with poverty. Dark with violence.

Herod went on a rampage, killing babies. Joseph took you and your mom into Egypt. You were an immigrant before you were a Nazarene.

Oh, Lord Jesus, you entered the dark world of your day. Won’t you enter ours? We are weary of bloodshed. We, like the wise men, are looking for a star. We, like the shepherds, are kneeling at a manger.

This Christmas, we ask you, heal us, help us, be born anew in us.

Your Children

Friday, November 09, 2012

Nothing Gold Can Stay

Nature's first green is gold, 
Her hardest hue to hold. 
Her early leaf's a flower; 
But only so an hour. 
Then leaf subsides to leaf. 
So Eden sank to grief, 
So dawn goes down to day. 
Nothing gold can stay. 
- by Robert Frost 

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Pinterest Craft Day with the Family

After spending hours (and hours and hours) on Pinterest over the last few months and finding some things I wanted to make, I thought it would be a lot more fun to create my Pinterest treasures with the girls in my family.   I thought it would be fun to wait until the crisp fall air moves in and everyone starts thinking about the upcoming Thanksgiving & Christmas holidays.  So I mentioned it to the fam on Facebook and everyone thought it sounded like fun.  We picked a date and got our plans and supplies together.

My family is full of creative people who are fun to be with so what better way to spend a fall afternoon than with them, creating fun and interesting crafts.

We all met up on October 13th. We didn't really know what each other wanted to create so finding that out was just as much fun as seeing the finished product at the end of the day.  As each person filed in, we found out what craft they were planning to make and looked through the supplies they brought. 

Allison and Jen got to work right away, sifting through the supplies each one brought and sharing stuff each other could use.   Allison decided she would make some Christmas tree trim from beads and bells and stuff she's had around a while.  Jen pre-painted two canvases and she will apply cut paper in a cool flower design.

 Liz has a canvas that she is taping off to paint a modern design in multiple colors.
 Rosie is going to make some jet packs for the kids to use at her school.  They're gonna love them, Rosie!

 Jill is taping off votive cups and will glue glitter to the rims for festive everyday decorating at home.

 Sarah will cover 3 pails with black & white fabric.  She's going to use them for storage and put them on the  yellow etagere she inherited from Grammy.  Jan is going to fold festive paper into envelopes. 

 Jill's cute glittery votive candle holders, underway.

 Me, busy at work on my fabric covered button bracelet.

 Rich wouldn't tell anyone what he was making!

 Jen has all of her paper cut out and arranged in her design.

Allison keeps stringin' those beads and bells.

 Liz gets her painting underway!

Sarah is mod podgin' her pails.

 My buttons are all covered in fabric and ready to go on into the bracelet!

 Allison strung a ton of beads and bells!

 Rosie completed her jet packs!

 My fabric covered button bracelet turned out cute (well I think so!)

 Liz puts the finishing touches on her painting.

 Jen's picture is all done & super cute!

 Jill's glittery glowy candle holders are awesome!

 Amanda's boyfriend, Chris, created a planter for his gecko tank.

Mom bejeweled a pumpkin and made these gorgeous velvet & silk pumpkins.

Jan's paper folded envelopes turned out really cute!

 Olivia created this super cute spooky house.

 Rich made a bunch of masks that had various magnetic accessories that attached to them.

Amanda made this awesome Thanksgiving wreath.

 We didn't tell anyone there would be awards, but they should have known better!

 Jen & Liz fill out their ballots.

 Amanda tallied the votes while we all anxiously awaited the results!!

 The votes are in!  Jill wins "Most Likely to Duplicate!"

 Allison wins the Cutest award!
Rich got two awards.  Most Creative & Most Complicated for his interchangable magnetic masks.

 Jen is shocked to win Grand Supreme Champion for her cute paper cut design on canvas. 

 She can hardly contain her joy, as you see above!

 The award winners!!

 Everyone agrees, this was one of the best parties we've had and it was fun watching everyone use their creative juices to make something special for themselves or others.  We've decided there will be a Holiday version of this Pinterest Craft Party at Thanksgiving time.  We can't wait to see what John might create!!!!

The Grand Supreme Champion has to return the trophy at the next Pinterest Family Craft Event.  Maybe she'll win again, maybe she won't.  The trophy will be in possession of the winning crafter until the next Pinterest Craft Party.

In the meantime, happy pinning and planning for the next party!

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Set Up a Gmail Account for your Baby

I just read an article online.  In it, the dad said he set up a gmail account for his newborn son.  Throughout his son's life, he's going to send him funny stories, pictures and keepsakes of his life.   What a great idea!!!!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Me and the Lady Who Fell

The other day, I was in the Government Center, heading downstairs on the escalator.  I noticed a blind lady riding the up escalator.  She had her hands full with her lunch in a styrofoam container, her walking stick, her purse and a large drink.   I passed her on my way down, her way up.  Another girl was riding down at the same time I was.

As I got off of my escalator, I heard a loud sound from upstairs.  I looked up and didn't see the lady I had passed.  I thought, "she must have fallen."  I jumped on the up escalator and saw her laying at the top. The girl that rode down with me looked up, saw the lady laying there and walked off.  I couldn't just leave her laying there.

So, I rode up and got right up next to her.  She was in my way so I couldn't get off and the escalator kept moving pushing me into her.  I couldn't reach the button to stop the escalator, so I almost fell on top of her several times.  Finally another woman walked over and was able to stop the escalator.  Thank God!

I asked the lady who had fallen if she was ok.  She was still laying there.  She didn't answer me.  I asked again.   (the lady who stopped the escalator was just standing there).   I looked at her and said, "I don't think she can hear me."   I noticed she had hearing aids so I got down closer to her and said louder, "Are you alright?"  She finally answered and said she was ok.   Her lunch (chicken wings, greens, bread and a huge cup of water) was all over the floor. 

She was able to get up from laying flat and was feeling around on the floor trying to find her lunch.  I asked if her knees were ok.  She said she wasn't hurt. I told her that her lunch was all over the floor and she said, "I know."  I said, you can't eat this.  I'll clean it up and throw it away.  I kneeled down and my knee got all wet from her drink (and God knows what else).  I cleaned up the mess and told her I was sorry she had fallen.  She said she was ok and thanked me for helping her and wandered off.

I felt sorry for her. I'm sure she was so embarrassed that she missed the top of the escalator and that she dropped her lunch everywhere.  I'm not sure why she didn't take the elevators, it would have been much easier for her and the elevator bank is right by the escalators.  So, who knows why she made that decision.  I was just glad I was there to help her. 

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Japanese Pens, Erasers and other Cool Stuff

In my never ending quest to find cool pens, paper, pencils, office supplies and such, I found the motherland!

One night I decided I needed to find one of my all time favorite pens, the Pentel Tradio Stylo Fountain Pen.  I had owned one years ago, drained the pen dry and cried myself to sleep for nights and nights after.  I never was able to find that pen in stores again.  But I never forgot it.  Knowing I'm not alone in my obsession over pens and office supplies, I set out on a quest to find my beloved Tradio pen online.

I googled the pen name ...and guess what I found?  JetPens!!  My life has never been the same!  Finally I found my kindred spirit!  A website for people who love pens, office supplies, erasers, etc., as much as me!!!  What I discovered was much more than just my beloved Pentel Tradio pen, I found they offered all kinds of cool Japanese pens, erasers and supplies for artists, illustrators and aficionados like me!

I started following JetPens on Facebook and Twitter and began reading their blog, all in a quest to try and stay current on what they were offering and what was new and hot!  One day, my dream came true!  They offered their readers a chance to review a product offered on their site and write a review on my very own blog about it!!  So of course, you know I signed up!!

GUESS WHAT!  I got the chance to write a review!!!!   I received the CUTEST little Iwako Elephant eraser.   He's so cute and happy and makes me (and everyone around me) smile.  Just look at his cute little face!!  You can buy just the elephant or you can buy a menagerie of Zoo animals!  These are some of the cutest Japanese erasers I've come across.   Some of the other erasers Iwako offers are sushi erasers, donut erasers, bento box erasers!  They are too cute!  I know there are a lot of kids who collect erasers.  This is THE place to get unusual, unique erasers normally only found in Japan!

If you're searching for some of the best art supplies from Japan, JetPens is your source!  I've spent a ton of money with JetPens, mainly because they offer unique and unusual pens - and hard to find Japanese supplies - without having to pay expensive shipping costs from Japan!   In fact, if you spend $25.00 - you get free shipping from JetPens - and you know I always spend at least $25 bucks!

Some of the Japanese brands they offer are Saki, Kuretake, Akashiya, and Tachikawa.

Get over to JetPens now for everything a pen addict craves!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Quite Possibly My Favorite Poem of All Time

Walk with Me

If you have learned to walk
A little more sure-footedly than I,
Be patient with my stumbling then

And know that only
as I do my best and try
That I may attain the goal
For which we both are striving.

If through experience, your soul
has gained heights which I
As yet in dim-lit vision see,
Hold out your hand and point the way,
Lest from its straightness I should stray,

And walk a mile with me.

Friday, February 10, 2012

What is Pinterest?

Back in the old days, I can remember when people used to ask "do you have email?"  As the internet started evolving and more and more people became addicted, various sites became the "it" thing and the above question evolved over the years.


The newest and hottest thing is Pinterest!   So I have to ask, are you on Pinterest?  If you're, what rock do you live under????   My Grandma is practically on Pinterest!  (Ok that's a lie, but believe me she would want to be if she knew what it was....and had internet access!!)

Ok so maybe, like my Grandma, you just don't know what Pinterest is.  First of all, lets start with how it's pronounced.   It's the word "Interest" with a P tagged on the front.  I've heard it pronounced every way from Pin-terr-est to Pin-turst.  Nope, it's much easier than that, "Pin-trest."

So what is this phenomenon that's sweeping the world?  Well, think of it this way.  It's like a virtual bulletin board, where you can collect cool things that you find on the web.  Rather than having a list of bookmarks with sites and stuff and pages listed, Pinterest lets you build "boards" that you can categorize and organize all of your favorite things.

You'll need to understand some of the terminology before you get started:
  • Pinner - A pinner is someone who is pinning things to their boards
  • Pin - When you find something you like, you can pin it, add it, to a board and save it there forever
  • Board - A board is where you pin things you like.  Most people have multiple boards, with various names, to organize all of the things they pin
  • Follow - Click the follow button on any board and you'll see new things added to that board as they are added
  • Follow All - When you find one of your friends on Pinterest, you can choose to follow just one of their boards or follow all of their boards
  • Like - when you see something pinned on a board, you can "like" it to let the person you like what they pinned
  • Repin - You can repin something you find on Pinterest and select which of your boards to add it to so you'll always have it

Pinterest is fun to use for planning things like vacations, parties and weddings.  You can also use Pinterest to find new recipes, new clothes, the latest hottest things and just cruise around looking at what other people find that's cool!

So let's say you want to redecorate your home.  Here's a cool Pinterest site that you could use for inspiration:

Love nail polish as much as I do?  We've got you covered there too!

Are you planning a wedding?  If so, here's a board that has lots of interesting things for weddings:

It's winter time and might be hard to keep your kids energy levels down.  Here are some ideas for kids crafts that will keep your little one busy for hours and hours:

 I really want to travel to Europe for 2 weeks, so I've got a board that is dedicated to the places I want to see when I get there:

Hungry?  Here's my board dedicated to delicious things!

Hopefully this will help you newbie pinners understand the world of Pinterest.  I do need to warn you.  Once you jump on the site, you'll be hooked.  Prepare to spend hours and hours roaming around this site!  It's very addictive.

Happy Pinning!!

Thursday, February 02, 2012

Welcome to Indy, Superbowl Fans

After so much hype and talk, finally, it's here.  The 2012 Superbowl in Indy. 

As I have mentioned in the past, KS is providing staffing resources to the Superbowl, so you can imagine the flurry of activity over the last few weeks as our recruiting team nailed down all the people needed to greet and assist Superbowl visitors coming to our great city! 

For me, I've just been excited for all the hustle and bustle.  Anyone who knows me, knows, if there's action going on somewhere, I have to get in the middle of it.   So.  Of course I had to stick around downtown one night this week to check out Superbowl Village and all the goodies around it.

There's lots of excitement in the air.  Everyone I saw was smiling and friendly and looked like they were enjoying themselves.  The volunteer corp is!  There are hundreds of volunteers throughout the village and on every corner, all wearing blue and white scarves, so they are easily identified. 

Superbowl XLVI is going to one of the greatest yet - if the Superbowl committee, volunteers, temp workers and citizens of this great State have anything to do with it!

Get out and enjoy it!!