Where I've been...lately.

babs_clareJanuary 5, 2008

This should get any excessive babbling out of my system for a while: ) Well you can hope?

It never fails to happen, Halloween arrives then I get the cold sweats-not from illness,just from trying to juggle daily life/work with the holidays tossed in, Aj's Bday, and for some unearthly reason I said 'yes' and joined the PTU(parent-teacher union)at my kids' school. Well I'll just say it keeps me hopping-but now I'm worried what will happen if I'm not as committed next year. The PTU president always reminds me that she knows what I'm creatively capable of and she knows where I live(she smiles)....I just laugh and slink away into the shadows(hee hee).

So I guess I should start with Halloween-I only have one pic but I made Ryan's werewolf mask from faux fur you can buy at Pat Catan's & I cut & glued it piece by piece onto a plastic mask-it took a few weeks in between the daily grind but was complete in time for the holiday. Luckily AJ was satisfied to wear a store bought dementor(Harry Potter)costume otherwise I would have needed extra faux fur to patch my scalp from pulling my hair out; )


Funny how his eyes really glow red in this pic!

The next big hurdle involved a PTU holiday bizarre(bazaar)which I was asked to make signs for-that was fine but the night before the big shebang they suddenly remembered they needed 10 extra vendor signs and a snackbar sign too(why not,what the heck)...naturally this is when Ryan developed a fever and Chris was out of town for four days: ( [Ryan did recover..eventually & I did get the signs done in time]

Next came the week of Thanksgiving and I felt pretty good with the bazaar behind me and I planned to make a turkey feast for Chris' side of the family and it went off without a hitch. Once that was done I had a few days to whip up the plans for AJ's 12th bday. He's such a easy going kid-he was happy with yellow smiley face cupcakes-how EASY is that! No fancy cake this time-I'm not complaining. Here's AJ & his cousins on his bday...

Once AJ's party was over I started on my plans to make the photo back drop for PTU Santa's breakfast. I cheerfully volunteered to create a fireplace scene and someone(oops that was me)suggested hanging snowflakes from the ceiling...a LOT of them(smart,Babs). I had sheets of thin foam packing material and thought it would look great cut into snowflakes plus I'd be recycling! Yes it does look great but after the tenth flake it gets old fast(LOLOL). So anyway, each night after homework & making dinner,etc. I would cut flakes or work on building my fireplace which was made from cardboard styro cup boxes and a fluorescent light fixture carton that the school custodian bestowed upon me(she's very sweet). I decorated the facade completely with art paper(yes each stone was cut out and applied separately...ugh). I drew the flames on with oil pastels and used a little glitter too(why does that all sound so easy in print?).

Early in December was the School Christmas concert and both Ryan and AJ were required to wear ties: ) Ryan loves ties, AJ despises them lol. I crack up at the expressions they have in this pic...


PTU's next extravaganza would be Santa's pancake breakfast and the pixie shop where the kids get to do their own shopping for Christmas-it was on December 8th. Can you hear the snipping of my scissors and the swearing from having to clean up all the snowflake confetti created from my scissorhands? I had geometric bits of foam packing everywhere! Oh but there's more, I thought they needed a little glitter too...Crazy,just crazy.

OK so I should have done a step by step photo editorial but I think I was kind of occupied...these are the few shots I do have.


Don't tell anyone but I made the wreath too(!) I wish I had a pic of the flakes as they hung above each breakfast table but I was pretty busy on the actual day,so no pic. Maybe one will surface from the PTU committee that I can post.I sewed a series of three flakes on a strand of thread using flakes of different sizes-some were as large as ten inches across. These hung from the ceiling framework. The effect was cool because it looked like it was snowing.

By the time I cut the last snowflake out(I did about 50)I told my one friend that I would lose it if anyone asked me to make another snowflake...she later happened to give me a small gift at Christmas so I knew she'd get a laugh if I cut just one more for a thank you card to her : )

It ends up a few of the teachers at school couldn't remember how to cut a true snowflake(six sided)so I taught them. They asked me how I knew how to make them(can you imagine?) I told them I learned probably in 2nd or 3rd grade-but I always remembered that it should be six sided.[do I sound like Martha?yeesh]

This is all why I've been the absent idyll. There hasn't been one day though that I don't wonder what you guys are up to : )

Next I'll have to tell you about the big family cabin stay over Christmas break-it was really fun...and I should probably put it on a separate thread...

~Babs

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denisez10(SoCal)

Babs, the fireplace is terrific! What a job, what a fall/winter, what a cold sweat you've put me in, lol! Brings back the middle school years a little too vividly. Running away now...;)

    Bookmark   January 5, 2008 at 7:17AM
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cynthia_gw

Why am I suddenly so tired.

I hope that fireplace is being preserved for use the next 20 years. It's remarkable and everything in that last scene is perfect!

    Bookmark   January 5, 2008 at 7:37AM
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gardenbug(Canada zone 5)

Oh yes, I remember similar years. I'd run away with denisez10 if it weren't raining so hard there! I predict that DD will have similar years especially now that she has a sewing machine. That fire in the fireplace is amazing. Looks warm!

    Bookmark   January 5, 2008 at 8:48AM
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saucydog(z5MA)

LOL at the faux fur to replace the hair pulling, that was a good one :)

The fireplace came out perfect!!! I haven't seen a better Santa set up and you know I've seen my share :) What a great gift for the school!

The snowflakes would've been the death of me. I don't think my second grade teacher taught us that they were all 6 sided. I seem to remember Mrs. Head giving me lots of paddlings and not many lessons - Yes, I hope you're reading this you witch of a teacher....beating little 8 y.o. with your paddle :)

Ooopss....a bit of a side bar there.

And she cooked a turkey dinner too!

I'd say you put Martha to shame :)

Saucy

    Bookmark   January 5, 2008 at 9:31AM
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deanneart(z5Southern NH)

Wow Babs!!!! Fabu-fabu! I love it. You are so very creative. Thanks for sharing.
Deanne

    Bookmark   January 5, 2008 at 9:48AM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

I hope you are enjoying yourself...that is some busy schedule! I can see why you are asked to help out. You do an amazing job. The photo of AJ and crew on his BD... what a handsome group they are!

Enjoyed the photos... :-)
pm2

    Bookmark   January 5, 2008 at 4:34PM
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veronicastrum(z5 IL)

Amazing, Babs! The fireplace, etc. really came out well and your attention to detail really shows.

Now would you stop over here and whip up something that makes it look like my house is clean?

V.

    Bookmark   January 5, 2008 at 5:32PM
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just_t

Babs, you are awesome! Creative, talented and energetic. Your PTU is very lucky, as are your kids, to have you and your talents. Thanks for sharing all of this. I enjoyed seeing everything and no wonder my snowflakes haven't turned out (5 sides). ;o)
T.

    Bookmark   January 6, 2008 at 12:01PM
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gardeningmary

Babs - those are way cool!! I hope the fireplace is carefully preserved for future appearances. I agree with how lucky the PSU are to have your creative talents and endless energy. I made snowflakes for the first time in years with one of the children I work with, but I think we stopped at 3 rather that 50. I really enjoyed being involved with our PTSA when Annie and David were younger, enjoying the creative endeavors rather than the politicking (sp?). Your boys are growing into such handsome young men!

Looking forward to the next installment of Christmas in the Cabin.

Mary

    Bookmark   January 6, 2008 at 12:11PM
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chelone

OK, I guess your absence is excused. :)

Everything you've put your talented hands to is just terrific! I certainly hope the fireplace and the many snowflakes have been stored lovingly away so they may be hauled out in all the years to come. Loving efforts like your's (!) are the basis of "traditions". I do so hope the fact is not "lost" on people who, too often, look only to the "goal" immediately in front of them...

I could have sent you cat and dog hair in quantities certain to cover a child's mask in no time flat. (Unlike Cynthia, ;) ).

Babs., you would have really like Mum a lot. She was always "into" something... (consequently, so were my brother and I). Papier mache, stripping furniture, painting something, sewing, hooking rugs or braiding them... . Our Halloween costumes were wonderful... but we were required to be something SCAREY... no princesses allowed.

I see you've used your time profitably and JUDICIOUSLY. I'm not in the least surprised! and am delighted with your photo essay.

    Bookmark   January 7, 2008 at 7:09PM
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michelle_zone4

Babs, your absence is excused. You have been a busy bee. Enjoy those fun years. Your creativity is fabulous. I like the fireplace, the fire is so realistic. I've done similar projects to the snowflakes and wonder too what in the world am I doing? Thanks for sharing a glimpse of what goes on in your life.

Michelle

    Bookmark   January 7, 2008 at 11:08PM
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