Apr 23, 2014

DIY Postcard Swap

I saw a post card swap on Instagram and thought I'd try it out.  I'd never done one before.  I did watercolor post cards and they are ready to go.  We are supposed to get our 10 people's name to mail to on April 29th.  These are some of the ones I did.

You can sign up until April 28th if you want to give it a try.  Just click on the top button on my main blog page.  You get 10 post cards back in the mail.  I'll share the ones I get back.

National Letter Writing Month

After joining The Documented Planner Project on FB I started hearing of other fun groups that were available too.  I ventured out, to see what was out there and to see if it was fun and would keep me busy.  Boy did I ever discover fun.  

I've written letters since I was old enough to understand what they were.  My Mom worked for the U.S. Postal Service for as long as I can remember.  She's retired now.  When a new stamp came out she bought me a book home.  I had many stamp collections.  I had first run collections of the stamped envelopes for each state and they were in collectors albums.  I can't even remember now what all I had amassed on my bedroom bookshelves.  It interested me and she provided it to me.  I have had a pen pal in Japan since I was 14 years old, we still write.  We have been through graduation, marriage, children, my divorce and remarriage and her having to return to work and leave her children.  Language is no barrier, she knew enough English to read my letters.  When she didn't remember she would get someone who did to read them to her.  So we continued to write for 30 years this year.  She copied my first letter I sent her and sent it to me.  How awesome if was to see that letter in my 14 year old hand, my favorite music, my hopes and dreams at that age.  I still have it.  Most of her first letters that I had kept and all of my stamp collection among everything you can imagine were lost in our house fire when I was 19.  You don't know what all you depend on everyday of your life until you have to go and repurchase it all again.  It's amazing how much we amass in our life time.  What's amazing to me know is how much I get rid of, how much I don't want, I don't get attached to material good anymore.  That house fire taught me that lesson.

In late February of this year I found a group on FB called NLWM.  I joined not knowing what it was and started reading the post.  I learned that something big was happening in April and was everyone ready.  It was going to be a BIG deal.  I posted to ask what it was all about.  I wanted to do something big too.  The sweet ladies there explained it to me and I kinda got it but not really at first.  So I started following the board.  I started seeing photos of all of these piles of cards on some of their feeds.  I thought Wow that's a lot of cards.  I don't know if I can commit to this.  At the time I was still doing crochet because it was still a little cold.  I thought I'll crochet everyone a face cloth.  Well I got about 1/4 into that and my right hand locked up.  I started having the nerve pain in my ring finger that comes along with my Fibromyalgia and Arthritis.  So I got back on the board and started reading some more.  I thought I'm over thinking this.  So I started thinking of another idea.  Then I saw that some people sent to everyone in the group.  And I thought well I could make a card with watercolors and send it to everyone.  I've got 2.5 weeks, I think I can do that.  I set a goal and got started.  I drew the design and started painting.  I've never used an entire half pan in 2.5 weeks in my life.  I have now learned that you can do that. HA!  I had so much fun doing it though.

Then I got sick.  Allergies, yellow pollen everywhere.  I had no energy.  My Mom started helping me address the envelopes while I was still working on the cards.  I didn't think I could write something in every card so I typed it up and printed it out, stuffed every letter.  I taped every card and taped the back with washi tape so it wouldn't unseal and they not get their card.  I met my goal and mailed them out on March 31.  We couldn't receive mail before April 1st.  In this group you get 1 pen friend and the only thing you have to do is write one letter to that pen friend.  You also have to send a thank you note for the card the pen friend sends to you.  I'm a big stickler on sending thank you notes.  As of yesterday I mailed 130+ cards out, I've received over 100 cards and mailed over 90 thank you cards out with about 8 or 9 more to write today.  This only goes on for the month of April but I've already found a couple of pen pals to write to.  It is so much fun.

If this sounds fun to you go on over to Lindsay Ostrom's blog and read about it.  The best part is you'll have an entire year to get ready for next April.  I'm excited about that for sure.  I'm going to start making my cards next month and buying my stamps then too.  Here are some photos of the cards I've received this year.

my card from Lindsay telling me who my pen friend was going to be.

all of my cards done and ready to go

The first two days this is what I received.  So many talented people in this group.

And they just kept on coming.  I looked forward to the mail delivery everyday because I wanted to see what beautiful cards I would get to open that day.

I loved the tea cup at the top, it had a tea bag in it and a little tag with who it was from and a greeting on the other side.  So cute.  The black red and white is a fabric post card that is quilted.  I never would have thought to do that.  They are all just so talented.  I learned so much from this group of ladies.  I'm joining next year for sure.

Documented Life Project Planner

Updating about my Documented Life Planner.  It's been awhile since I've posted.  I did this one as an extra on week 5.  It's inspired from Judy Pham's work.  She's really wonderful.  It took a couple of hours to draw.  I love watercolors so I added color.  Love how she turned out and she's now at home in my planner.

This was inspired by Loui Jover.  I love his work so much.  I would love to have a piece of his art to hang in my home one day.  I love doing this one.  He using entire book pages to do a painting.  I only had a small area so I cut a couple of pages in small shapes.  The entire page makes for a much better effect.  This was for week 6.

Week 9 was the celebration of Mardi Gras in Louisiana so this was done on the back of my challenge water color page.  The purple background is actually Dr. P.H. Martin's Concentrated Water Color in Hyacinth Blue.  It's really more of a purple so that worked out good.  I enjoyed creating this page.

Week 11 was to create something with a bird on it.  I loved this little fat Robin so I drew him.  I took the photo before I added some details so he does look better now on my page.  He's just so cute with his chubby little cheeks.

Week 12 was to use something you cut out of a magazine.  I'd been sick this week so I used two clipping and painting the background with what else?  Blue of course.  That was about all I could muster up in order to keep up.

Week 14 we were to draw our name.  Who doesn't have practice with that?  All the doodling in high school while you're supposed to be taking notes?  I drew mine and added lines going all different directions.  I colored those in with Liquitex acrylic inks and then used Dr. P.H. Martin's concentrated Water colors in Raspberry to add the really bright pink background.  I love the bright colors.  I'm loving these concentrated watercolors.  I need more colors.

Week 15 was to create something monotone.  I did a face.  I've been trying to work on faces lately.  I need more work.  I make them way too long with long necks.  Practice makes perfect though.  I'll never be perfect, maybe a little better but not perfect.

Week 17 or this week's challenge was to add a photo or draw your favorite shoes.  My favs are my Birkenstock Gizeh's.  I wore the first pair I had out but they did last me a good 3 or 4 years.  I wore them so much that the cork split on the left side where my foot bends when I walk.  I take good care of the cork on them to make them last.  I mainly wear Birkenstocks or Allegro shoes because my feet love me for it.  I made this page with a crafters Workshop stencil from Balzer's designs the leaf pattern and molding paste.  I used my heat gun to dry it because I'm impatient.  Then I painted it a bit with some folkart cheap acrylic neon paints.  The little paper scraps are from a project I've been doing lately. I had a lot of fun with this page.  I put the most into this one since I started this project believe it or not.

That's all for now.  Thanks for visiting.