Sunday, November 30, 2014

PostHeaderIcon Wanderer's, Journey's and Destinations

Tangie Baxter introduced me to art journaling in 2010 with her first Art Journal Caravan. I thought I was in sheer heaven. I had never heard of nor seen anything like it before. My scrapbook experience was based in the traditional paper style of scrapping with all things archival and safe for the next thousand years. My digital experience was in Paint Shop Pro creating signature tags. Art journaling was the perfect blend of both. I could scrapbook or art journal all digital, all mixed media or combine the two. Happy, Happy, Joy, Joy!!!! Four years of being a part of Tangie's Art Journal Caravan has taught me that it's up to me to make time to create and very acceptable to express my feelings through my art. Creatively my world was wide open and this led me to stumble upon a little store called Deviant Scrap recently renamed Mischief Circus with so many different styles of mixed media and digital journaling. The designers are beyond stellar and the gallery will take your breath away with all the artsy inspiration!! 

Each year since the Art Journal Caravan Tangie has organized a yearly book project. This year's theme was Not all those who Wander are Lost which fit into the yearly caravan theme. I honestly had NO idea what direction my page would take but after looking through my gallery over at Mischief Circus I decided I wanted to do a series of pages using this fabulous little sky pirate
She looks so adventurous and bold and that's how I want to be in real life and most especially creatively. NO HOLDING BACK! Wandering purposely and enjoying things as they come, thus the title "Wanderer". I am thinking one more will come to complete the series. I will then treat myself and print them for the corner of the living room I have claimed as my artsy spot or either my bedroom so I can wake up each morning with reminders to enjoy the ride. Click >HERE< view all the credits.  Here is a peek at the first piece titled "The Journey is the Destination". 

The theme going into this one was Passport Dreaming

Where will your journeys take you?

Saturday, November 22, 2014

PostHeaderIcon Love is a Battlefield with Edgar Allan Poe

I never expected that after my last posting that I would take so long to post again but that's what happens when the husband "shares" his cold. The horrid awful thing about it though was that I nursed my daughter through hers and I did not get sick. I have taught her well the "rules of quarantine" for our home. I have the unfortunate luck that when I get sick....I get REALLY sick!!! Seriously....death bed sick!! My husband failed to really realize that. I loved on him by cooking homemade tomato soup, ooey gooey grilled cheese sandwiches, bag fulls of medications all the while trying to keep a safe buffer zone. He did not follow the rules of "no touch". Not only did he not follow that rule, he expressed his gratitude for all the comfort I lovingly provided by sharing big hugs and kisses on the cheek....several times.....and screaming like he had the ebola virus to get away and love me from afar. 

Sooooo.....I got caught with a cold BIG time and then with the weather changing add some sinus headaches to the mix and I have been pretty non-functional for 3 weeks. I am very much grateful that I have been feeling good enough to get up piddle about some again. 

In between feeling alive and dead I was able to get the creative juices flowing and created this page using CryztalRain's Edgar Allan Poe kit from Micheif Circus. I totally did not see this one evolving until I was halfway through because I so wanted to do more of a haunting spooky type page but as all you art journalers know......we create the way our heart leads us. I still love it even though it's not what I set out to create. 

 The quote reads Love is a Battlefield • Heartache to Heartache We Stand • Love is a Battlefield inspired by Pat Benatar and the font used is Telescoping by Tangie Baxter. 

I will leave you with this beautiful ballad and who might inspire you also. ♥

Friday, October 31, 2014

PostHeaderIcon A Broken Soul

Yes. I have been hiding under a rock. Even now I don't want to come climbing out but life is passing me by and I have to either decide to live it or just totally give in.  I have spent the past few months trying to redefine what my marriage should be.....or rather....I knew what it should have been (AND WHAT I THOUGHT IT WAS) but the other half did not. I will not give out gory details but an alcohol addiction that my husband was able to hide from me because of the way he was away for work all the time was the driving force for a life evaluation and choice I was given to either walk away or stay. I have chosen to stay. I made a commitment that I will honor even though I had every reason in the world not to.  I am still on shaky ground with tons of emotions from all the fall out. At first I clung to my faith.....then I cursed God.....and then clung some more....I am still working out hurt and anger and trying to surround myself with positive. I just never thought I could love someone and want to hurt him like I was hurting all at the same time.  No one died, yet there was a death. A part of me died. I don't know if I will ever get it back.  My critics have painted me as a "glass half empty" kinda girl but I am really the "glass half full" girl. I believe in people and give them way to many chances when most people would just cut their losses. I do believe people can change. I have. I have needed chances. I guess that is why I will always risk getting hurt even when the smart thing would be to run in the opposite direction.   

I am slowly getting the courage to believe in myself again. My brain knows I am not responsible for my husband's less than stellar behavior but emotionally all I can do it think of all the what if's I did this or that, or if I was prettier, sexier, skinnier, fatter, all the awful things we women can think of to do damage to our self esteem. And I should add this....he does not blame me for any of his bad decisions or his drinking. He has taken full responsibility.
It however, does not stop me from fighting the feeling of being inadequate. 
I go to bed every night with the resolve to wake up and face the day fiercely....the first few weeks the resolve was to wake up and just make it through the day.

Over these past few years I had quit and/or severely cut back on doing the things I enjoyed such as art journaling, photography, scrapbooking or just going out and doing girly things. All this in a effort of what I thought would let him know that I wanted to give him attention and listened to how he felt. In the end, I lost. I gave up my identity. The sad part is that I did not even know it. I prided myself on being a strong independent woman who could tackle the world but that was just the pretty picture I got good at letting the world see. Love should not take away from who you are. Love should add. Two shall become one....but the one should also still be a functioning and thriving individual. I was not that anymore. My life revolved around his wants, needs etc....he didn't demand it. He didn't have to. He wasn't home like we wanted so I felt like I NEEDED to be at his beck and call when he was.  No I was not perfect. Not the perfect housewife in the perfect mood or any of that jazz like you would see on the Leave it to Beaver show. 

So here I am just trying to reconnect with the world and put my broken soul back together. I will never be the same person I was but I am very much working on being okay with that fact. I don't know how long it will take but I am hoping that on this journey to heal and rediscover who I am again that I will wake up one one morning and I won't have to "try" to face the day fiercely because it will be the day that will be going "Whoa!!!! Look out!!! Here she comes!!!" and I will have the joy back of just being the best me I can be.

*Just a couple of extra notes. The husband is no longer working a job that takes him away from home and he has been alcohol free since July 5th. I am very proud of him for that.  

*RedHead Girl Photography is little ole me. 

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

PostHeaderIcon Exploring Photo Apps

This marks the last week of our massive spring cleaning.  The annual youth group rummage sale is set for this coming weekend and what is not boxed and sent by tomorrow will be donated to Goodwill or "if" I can find room to store it till next year I will. After a couple of loads of the car stuffed from the backseat to the trunk, I don't think I will have many things left to worry over. 

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The very best places to get free and easy to manage boxes are Radio Shack's (they get deliveries on Wednesdays) and banana boxes from the grocery store. The banana boxes are my favorite because they have handles. 

When not doing that, I have been driven batty with trying to get my Olympus DSLR working properly but I have come to the conclusion that it has come time to start saving up for a new camera. I will admit that I whined and felt sorry for myself for a bit but then decided to take it as a challenge. The best camera is the one that you have with you sooooooo since I have my iPhone with me almost all the time I decided to see how far I can stretch the creativeness of the photography apps and practice my general photo taking skills.  

Here is a before photo of my DD. No editing. Taken with my iPhone 5.

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And here is the After. I loved her profile in this and I wanted to do something really artsy but worthy of framing. 

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I am very pleased with how it turned out. The only thing that bugs me is the gap on the shadow on the horizontal arrow. What looked good on the small screen on my iPhone doesn't when I see it on a bigger screen. (oh how I would ♥ and iPad) I can't tell you what settings or what order I used these time I share before/after photos I will be more prepared to share those steps. 
Here's the apps I used:
Rhonna Designs 

Here is another Before, no editing and taken with the iPhone 5. The afternoon sun was absolutely gorgeous shining on this Red Flowering Quince. It's one of the first things to bloom in the spring.

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This is the After. Again, I was just playing around just to see how far I could push the apps and keep my photo looking like a cool artsy piece that I would actually be proud to frame. 

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Apps used:

All export at full resolution and all of them have in app purchases for extra filters. In my personal opinion you get a lot of bang for the buck and the extras run from 99 cents to $2.99, definitely nothing too outrageously expensive.

I would absolutely love to hear and see anything you have edited with apps. Link me up so I can leave you some love!!!!♥

Monday, March 10, 2014

PostHeaderIcon Definitely Denim ~ New from CrystalRain

CryztalRain's newest kit Definitely Denim will have you swimming in blue jean heaven! Loaded with tons of worn blue jean goodness balanced with hues of brown with the brightness of sunflowers makes for a kit that is just a delight to scrap with. Tons of brushes and masks help make it perfect for artsy journal pages or regular scrapping. On sale for a limited time at Deviant Scrap. Click Here to snag this wonderful kit to add to your digital stash of goodness.

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Thursday, March 6, 2014

PostHeaderIcon The Harsh Truth of Being a Hot Mess and Fixing It

I have spent the month of February trying to find the balance again in my life. I spent a good two weeks of it feeling like I was swept away in an ocean current trying to swim my way back to shore. I was shocked at how freaked out I was after I took a very harsh look at what I had let my priorities become over the last 14 months. What I saw I did NOT like one single bit. As I was cleaning my family room I noticed the parallel themes of the magazines I had picked up at the first of the month. Was my subconscious trying to tell me something?!?!?!?  These two covers said it life needed balancing AND organizing. I had become a hot mess and my home right along with me....if you came to visit, things looked great, I just would not advise looking in closets or time traveling 30 minutes before you arrived. I had become the Queen of "Ten Minute Tidy". 

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Armed with the harsh facts of what was not working, I went to work to set it right again. I am not saying that a clean house cures all, but for me, it makes me feel like I have control again. I control the things. They don't control me. The messiness in my home would no longer be dictating my stress level, invading on my happiness, pushing me to procrastinate to do the joyful things that happen in day to day living. Everything would have a place again and when that is the case I am very content. Pristine and perfect was not my goal, tidy and lived in was.

I tackled closets, cabinets, utility room and computer/craft room and I have many boxes of well loved, gently used items to be donated to the youth group at church for their rummage sale in April. I am "almost" where I want to be before I give the final *sigh* of relief.  Last Saturday I tackled my bill pay area. As awful as this looked with tons of unopened mail, the shelves underneath it were twice as bad. I take the majority of the blame but the man also helped make this mess. I knew the regular bills but after going through it all I found things not paid or some other time sensitive mail that I had NO idea we had gotten. I always wonder why in the world when you want your man to play the silent bystander he is all mouth and when you need him to step up and do something so simple as open an envelope or just speak up and bring your attention to it....not a word? Surely I am not the only woman in the world with a husband/significant other such as this? New mail rules have been set. If you bring it are responsible for opening it....and filing in the proper place and since I know this will only be short lived...kinda like talking to a kid....I am now on notice to stay on top of it all.  Something I can do now that I am not working...let me rephrase...not working outside of the home

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Image and video hosting by TinyPic

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I picked up the little bins at our local Dollar Tree. I was very pleasantly surprised that they had a sturdy insert for the bottom and the sides were not flimsy. It sure beat the $6.00 a piece price that Walmart had them for. 

After an EPIC fail on the husband's part for Valentines Day, he sent me flowers for my birthday. That was on the 17th and as of today (3/6) I still have a carnation, the yellow flowers and all the greenery and fillers still looking pretty on my dining room table. I love a mixed arrangement like this much better than stinky old roses....blech!!!!!  

And on that note....I will leave you with photos of the beautiful blossoms I was treated with.♥

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Friday, February 21, 2014

PostHeaderIcon Inspiration for You from CryztalRain

I am super excited to tell you about CryztalRain's newest kit, Inspiration, available at Deviant Scrap! It's been the perfect kit to get me back into the groove of creating pages for my own albums again. It's soft and serene color palette is so very easy to work with and it's diverse and artsy enough to create traditional and art journal pages. Go grab it for your stash of wonderful "go-to" kits here in her shop at Deviant Scrap.

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Wednesday, February 5, 2014

PostHeaderIcon Faith in a Fresh Start

January 27th. 
It's been nine days since that Monday.
Nine days since I could not take it anymore and quit my job.

I feel so foolish in my judgement of thinking someone was my friend. As soon as the new girl W. was hired, I was booted to the curb. All my efforts of being a good coworker and friend went up in smoke. All the days of trying to educate, the extra time that I spent outside of work creating notes for some of the techy stuff and the days I worried over her (F.) and fixed a hot lunch and offered a shoulder to "lean on" were very easy to replace by a fresh face. I wish I could say I did not care but I do. My feelings are very much hurt and like I mentioned earlier, I feel completely stupid in thinking I had a coworker that had become a true friend.

Back track to the Thursday before (Jan. 23) and it's where the beginning of the end truly started...only I did not realize that then. Long story short, F. and I had a difference of opinion of where W. should be trained that day. I felt she was not ready. F felt she was. Because I disagreed, I immediately got branded the B***h of the day. I did offer a sarcastic apology addressing the fact that F. apparently was the only one "allowed" to have a bad day and to do as she wished. The atmosphere was as chilly as the weather the rest of the day. I eventually asked to leave early as we had no customers to warrant 3 employees. 

It did not help that later that day I found out that F. had told someone I had already quit. I did go to work (a couple of weeks ago) and did give my notice but I had also asked her to keep that tidbit of info to herself. She promised. What happened in the meantime was that an agreement was made to cut my hours and get a raise. 

So here we are again....Monday morning. I was all pleasant and thought things had blown over. People have bad days. Friends take the good with the bad especially when the bad is not very often. Apparently F. was holding a grudge. Short temper, short words and informing me "we" needed to discuss the last time we worked together. I really did try my best but there is only so much a person can take. Grow up! The last straw for me was when I asked about her telling my friend that I had quit...she denied the point that she called that person a liar. Frustration, hurt feelings and just flat out being pissed off hit me all at the same time. 

In that instant, I knew my place was home with my daughter being a Mama, catching her up on her home school studies, and being home to keep my house up and be the loving and not exhausted wife that my husband deserves. These are priceless and non material things that a job making minimum wage can never ever compare to. (I took a job making way less that what I am qualified to so to avoid the drama and just work a few hours. I can easily go to work tomorrow with my dialysis experience and phlebotomy license.)  

So here I sit....blogging....venting....purging....and getting my life back into a sensible and balanced order. God and family first. Faith that as long as I keep God first, then everything else will fall into place. 

Proverbs 3:6 - In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.

Friday, January 24, 2014

PostHeaderIcon Wonder Woman I Am Not!

So far, Operation "Check the Mail Daily" has been pretty successful.  There's only been a few days that I have not checked it but it was because of rain or laziness, not because of the "dread." I have my "tax" box all ready for all the documents needed that have yet to come in the mail for the loveliness of tax season. This season is going to be complicated with the Obamacare going into effect - but that's a whole other story........
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Another hurdle I have been working on has been work. I don't have a hard job. It's mostly just customer service which I can do in spades. It's the time invested. I went back to work November 1st, 2012 on a part-time basis. Part time as in 2 days a week. Six weeks into the job my bosses wife passed away and less than 2 weeks after that one of the other employee's had a head on collision on the way to work. He survived but was set to be out of work for months (and never returned). There were only 4 employees to start with and that included me. I then started working 3 days a week...Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. In between all of this, I was "trying" to homeschool.  Another girl was hired in January...she immediately started having health problems, was very unreliable, quit in April (I think).  That put us back to 3.  Another girl who had been there 3 years quit in July.  Down to 2 of us. Me and the bosses daughter. The girl that quit because of health problems came back...issues resolved and another girl was hired but only worked from July to September. Throw in me not working at all in August because of my Dad's health scare, and the fact that the bosses daughter left to go on maternity leave as soon as I came back. Work was a hot mess! The holidays were horrendous to work because the boss man did not hire any holiday no days off.....not happy.  The home school scenario...well....not much of it was happening....the house for the most part stayed cleaned but what did it matter...I was too exhausted to enjoy it or my family.  

Two weeks ago, I had just had it. My daughter needed me, my husband deserved me not being so exhausted when he was home and I deserved to not feel so completely drained all the time, so I returned to work and gave the boss my notice. It was emotional, but it was also a decision I had prayed over...A LOT!  We have since come to a compromise. I will work 2 days a week and I got a raise.  Also another employee was hired to work full time and she started this past Monday. She seems nice. I hope she stays.

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After the emotional breakdown with work, I now start my day off with my favorite cup. It's my favorite because of the little saying on the inside of the rim and it doesn't hurt that it the perfect size for hot chocolate. YUM!!!! Add to that my daily devotional each morning and the fact that I know in February I will have more time to devote to my family, my nerves have calmed down tremendously. 

Why do we as women think we can be Wonder Woman? Why does it take getting to the edge of an emotional breakdown before we tell the world to "back off"!?!?!?!?!

Thursday, January 9, 2014

PostHeaderIcon Hello 2014

Happy New Year!

As I watched the last sunset of 2013, I was reminded of God's blessings and the grace he has shown me and mine over the past year. It was not without hardship by no means, but faith is what has brought us through and will continue to carry us through the coming year (and many more). 

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After standing in awe of the beauty of a simple sunset and watching as the darkness fell as the day slipped away, I was reminded by my daughter that we had plans to go see the midnight showing of The Hobbit. After working all day I definitely had to take a nap before going. I so wanted to back out of it but I made my daughter a promise that I had to keep. It would have been so very nice to have had the hubby go with us (he would have been doing the driving) but he was out of town for work so we just exchanged midnight text messages. Just another day as the wife of a lineman.

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The movie was LONG but quite wonderful in our opinions. It does leave you with a cliff hanger and wishing the movie could continue on. That is the whole point I suppose, suck you in so that you will come to the third installment of the series of movies. Consider me "sucked in". LOL!

Of course after a 2 and half hour movie, what girl does not have to go to the rest room? Apparently we were the LAST ones still in the lonely little car was the only one still in the parking lot. It was freaky and a bit scary walking out. We did.....really fast and huddled up together and got into the car in Flash Gordon speed.

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Breakfast was at the IHOP one block over and after the hour drive back home it was almost 4 a.m. It was all worth it to see my daughter smile and know that her Mama keeps her promises. My son was invited to go with us but he had his own plans and from the photos posted on FB, I see that he had a great time bringing in the new year.

And on that note, I will quit bending your ear and with the most sincerest wishes that you have a year filled with blessings.♥

And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus. (ESV) Philippians 4:19

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Balinda (RebelChick)
Just an everyday girl trying to find my way in the world to live life fiercely and passionately. I was a signature tagger for several years but art journaling has replaced that passion and it feeds my soul creativiely and spiritually. I also homeschool my DD, scrapbook, play around in photography, spoil my cats and drive my hubby insane on a daily basis. My faith in the Lord helps me juggle all these blessings. I keep this blog because it makes me happy. Sometimes I blog a lot and other times it collects a little dust. Thanks for visiting and being my friend.♥
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