Friday, August 21, 2015

Mushroom Love

     So I promised I would give you a little background on this particular piece. It has a couple of meanings. The first being the obvious, everyone should be allowed to love whomever they choose. Personally, I don't care if your black/white/latino/gay/straight/trans/Christian/Buddist/purple with pink polka-dots...Okay! Why can't we all just love each other?

     The biggest reason though for this work is my parents. Now as many of you know I lost my dad last August and was unabe to make it back for his funeral. I wanted to do something small that reminded me of the happy times I shared with him, and I couldn't help but think that he is the reason I'm a Geeky Girl. I love video games because of my dad! He bought me the Atari when it first came out, and it was the first gaming system we owned. We later upgraded to a nintendo, and we would spend hours sitting on the floor playing it. I loved Mario brothers with my favorite being Super Mario 3. What can I say, I love being able to turn into a flying racoon. ;D

     My best memory is the one I share with my mother about my dad and I playing Chip and Dale Rescue Rangers. We spent more time throwing acorns at each other and knocking each other off of the tree than we ever did the missions, but it's my favorite memory.

     Now for those of you unfamiliar with Mario (for shame!) the Red mushroom will make Mario or Luigi grow big. The Blue Mushroom was introduced in later versions and makes your character  shrink to teeny tiny proportions. Now this piece represents both my parents. They both always said they were mushrooms, kept in the dark and fed bull. Those of you that know my  parents know also that there was an age and size difference in them. Mom is a larger lady, from many years of farm work when she was younger, and Dad was a fairly scrawny fellow. So my Mom is the Red mushroom and my dad is the Blue. On a side note, my dad's eyes were also blue, so I thought it was fairly fitting.

     So dad, I hope your up there shaking your head and smiling thinking of our video game time whenever you grand kids start taking each other out on Infinity. The apple apparently doesn't fall far from the tree.

This design was also inspired by a previous version I did as a part of a series that I will be working on entitled Be You~nique and can be seen here:

Both pieces are available on my Society6 website as Fine Art prints and apparel.

Friday, July 17, 2015

Summer Passport Fun 2

So here is part 2 for the Summer Passports.

I really had such a blast making these. They took a bit longer than anticipated, but were well worth it. Of course this will more than likely be an annual tradition now as the kids loved this one so much they want one each. LOL!

Who doesn't love Disney.  (Okay, I know there are a few people, but hey there's one in every bunch right?) This is one of my favorite places. I love the magic and fun that going to Disney means. The grandparents surprised the girls by taking them. I have to admit though, I am a little jealous that I didn't get to go with them. After all, it's my favorite place to go, besides snuggling down into warm fresh out of the dryer sheets. :D

There's a hospital in Florida that I used to take the girls for appointments, and it was tradition while we were there to always go and feed the ducks after an appointment. Since they are going to be in the area, I thought they might enjoy visiting sans Dr. Appointment.

Not many fireflies left last time I was there, but I hope they can catch a few and admire them for a while. One of my best memories of being employed at the Sheriffs Office was watching a grown police officer in uniform dance around until he caught a firefly for me because I had never done it as a child. They are some pretty awesome  little beetles. Did you know that the light they omit (bio-luminescence) is used to attract both mates and prey?

 The junkyard band I was originally going to leave out because I thought I was running out of room in the booklet. But one of my daughters begged me to put it in. So what is it? It's basically using your imagination to create instruments out of recycled materials. The guitar can be made from layers of cardboard cut to shape, then you cut a couple of rubber bands and stretch them to make the strings. The Drums are cleaned out soup cans with the labels peeled off (hey, save those box tops, and labels for education - the schools could really use those) then you stretch a balloon over the top and hold in place with a rubber band. The maracas are two plastic spoons taped over a plastic egg with beans, change, or rocks inside. The pan pipes are straws cut different lengths and taped together.  The opportunities are endless here. We've made a tamborine before with beans, cardboard and multi-colored strings, and I'm sure you could make a harp in a similar manner as the guitar. Just use your imagination.

Again as before, most of these are self explanatory. Just fun things to keep the kids active and give them choices. We like to eat out, but if I let my kids have there way, we would be eating Chicky nuggets and fry-fry's till the cows came home. So that's why there are several food choices in the passport as well. Plus most of these places we do not have in WA.

Last but not least, I do I do believe in Fairies. Always have, always will, and the girls do as well. This one was a specific request that they had to have in the book. They also make a mean fairy soup with acorns and herbs found from around the house, wild garlic, blackberry as well. I'm not sure if the fairies like it or not, but hey at least they are trying, and it's the thought that counts.

I hope you enjoyed the Passport tour and you were able to find a few fun ideas that you could use for your own kids, or your own kid at heart.

Next week marks the first official permanent change to the blog as I will be revealing my Made in America art series, and the blog will focus a bit more on my art. But don't worry, I'm sure my kiddos and related activities will still make it in as well. Thank you for sharing in my journey.

Friday, July 10, 2015

Summer Fun Passports

I cannot believe it has been over a year since I have posted!

I've finally ironed out scheduling it seems, only to still be working on the changes to the Realm. We'll get there one day, I promise.

Until then, I wanted to share with you these super fun Summer Passports I made my kiddo's for the summer.

If you've been following me over on instagram, then you have seen most of these before. This is part 1 so I don't overwhelm you with photos on the first posting back.

You'll see this image repeated a little farther down, but I wanted to show the cover and since it has already been sent to my kiddo's in Florida; I can't really take another picture of it. I used a passport stamp from Stamp Out Online (which has fantastic custom made stamps by the way) and a pigment ink by Tsukineko (Dew Drop) in Pearlescent Olive. The color looked gold to me against the blue, so I added gold embossing powder before the ink dried and then heated to emboss. Give it a more "official" feel.

This is page one of the girls passport. I suppose I should give a little background information on why I created this for my kiddos. I was supposed to go with my college to Italy for the summer, so we made arrangements for my husbands parents to watch the kids this summer in Florida. I wanted them to still feel close to me though seas apart, so decided to create these fun passports after seeing a similar post on Pinterest here. Long story short, my summer plans for Italy fell through, but we still wanted the kids to enjoy the summer with the Grandparents, and in a couple of weeks, we'll be joining them as well.

Also, the adventurer oath I borrowed and adapted to fit our family from here. The Tickle Wolf is a whole 'nother story hailing from our time in Germany. (But That's a post for a different day.)

Please excuse the over saturation and/or the under saturation of the images. I thought scanning these in would be better than photographs, but I have a fairly horrible scanner, so it didn't go quite as planned. I'll make sure I photograph all other images after part 2. 

In short, these are fairly self explanatory. The squares or blank spaces at the bottom are where the kiddo's can stamp and write the date for when they have completed the activity.  I did order a custom monogram stamper with the Letter C on it as a surprise for them. It says Chism Travels on it, and has Been There, Done That in a circular format. (Again, hindsight being 20/20) I didn't think to snap a photo of it before I shipped it off with them.


So I hope you have enjoyed part 1. All of the images are my own design, and I colored them with watercolor pencils in a Moleskin 3.5 X 5.5 blank page journal. I'm considering offering something like this in my Etsy shop for next summer, so if you like these, please let me know. They will all be custom and hand drawn if I offer them. Please feel free to leave me feedback and comments.

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