Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Fa La La La Fail

Following on the success of Ho Ho Ho, I tried to make a Fa La La.


It just doesn't look right. I've been trying to figure out why. It started out OK with a nice fat F,

 but by the time I made it to the end, all I had was this squished little a, ...

which looked really puny compared to.this big ole honkin' a.

 ...and this other big ole honkin' a.

I don't know why the a's were so big and honkin' and all around ginormous. Maybe it was because the pages in this book seemed thicker than most pages. Maybe because a's take a lot of pages to begin with and when you slap 'em on top of an L that just exacerbates the problem. 

I tried to fix them.I squeezed and smashed and even got out my bone folder. What, you don't own a bone folder? Don't judge me.

But after all that I still had big ole honkin' a's. I said to myself, "Self, life is just too short to spend worrying about big ole honkin' a's. You can always turn the whole thing into a vase, you know." 

So I took a deep breath, 

grabbed a different book, 

and made myself a Ho Ho Ho with glittery candy cane paper. 

 Take that big ole honkin' a's.

Monday, November 26, 2012

I'll Have a Blue Christmas (with maybe a little green)

More for Christmas. I took a break from folding to do a little rolling instead. Here's my new wreath.

Ever since Captain America and I moved into our new house, I've been more of a blue & green Christmas person than a red & green Christmas person. 

But I may change my mind again and want red and green again.

So I made my wreath with Velcro.


But right now I still want blue and green.

Lots of blue and green.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

All I Am Saying Is Give Peace a Chance

Here is another in the Christmas series. This time I decided to fold Peace and I decided to make it purple, because purple used to be my favorite color until I was told I owned too much purple stuff and had to pick a new color so now orange is my favorite color (but it's really still purple, just don't tell my decorator or Captain America).

I figured it would turn out well because Peace is shaped a lot like Read. (I think there is a sermon in there somewhere, but I will refrain.) 

I used the same font on purpose.

Once the word was folded, I had to decide what to do with the end papers. The cover of the book is purple (shhhhh!) and the original purple-swirled endpapers were actually pretty nice, but for Christmas I figured they needed a little extra pop.

So I made my 61st trip to Hobby Lobby for the weekend, this time looking for purple Christmas-themed scrapbook paper. You would think that would be pretty easy to find, being almost Advent and everything, but not so much.

I headed to the scrapbook paper section of Jo-Ann's next. I found the Christmas scrapbook paper--behind a lady, her daughter, and her mother in a scooter. They were having a very intense discussion on sewing machines and irons. It lasted way too long, and to add insult to injury, when they finally cleared out of the way, there was no purple scrapbook paper in Jo-Ann's Christmas section, either.

I made one last trip through the single-sheet aisle and at the very bottom of the purple section, I found what I wanted--purple with glittery silver stars and it was on sale. Sold!

I took it home, sprayed glue all over the back, and covered the endpapers. Done! Well, not so much.

Apparently the reason it was on sale was because it wasn't your normal scrapbook paper. It almost had the feeling of handmade paper and the spray-on glue? It stained it. Grrr...

Luckily I had bought two pieces of paper, so I popped off the old and added the new--this time with a glue roller instead of spray. And here we have the final product.

 I think it's beautiful. Especially because it's purple.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Book Review: American Gods

Title: American Gods
Author: Neil Gaiman
Format: Audiobook
Reading Dates: Sep 27 - Nov 20, 2012
Rating: ***

It's been awhile since I've written a review. That's because I intentionally took on some big books, and this is the first of them that I've finished. It took me nearly 2 months to make my way through this book and I'm still trying to decide if it was worth the effort. In the Introduction of the book, Gaiman says that he wanted it to be "big and odd and meandering." It certainly is that.

I did find the premise of the book to be original. When people from all over the world came to American from other countries, they brought their gods with them. Now hundreds and even thousands of years later, these gods are in danger of dying out and being replaced by the newer gods of media, technology, and the like. A battle is brewing.

Shadow, recently released from prison, is offered a job by the mysterious Mr Wednesday to be his driver as he amasses the older gods for the coming fight. As Shadow and Wednesday make their way through the mid-American landscape, Gaiman introduces a host of characters and places with only a smattering of plot to tie them all together. Here and there he includes more traditional stories and breaks in every now and then with a Coming to America segment that detail how many of the different gods were brought to this country. I found these the most interesting.

As much as I liked the premise, I kept waiting for something to happen. When the big climax of the book did happen, ironically it seemed anti-climatic. We went through all those pages for this, I thought?

I listened to this book via Audible. It is one of the first books I've listened to that had a full cast recording. I found that really disconcerting at first, not just because it was strange to hear all those different voices, but because the dialogue was so short, the voices seemed contrived. Later though, as I became used to it, I did think the voices helped me keep track of who was whom in the large cast of characters.

Overall, an interesting read/listen, but not my favorite.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Dr Frankenstein Meets Santa Claus

Welcome to my lab where I conduct all kinds of crazy experiments--even on Santa!

I was smelling all my Christmas scrapbook paper the other day when I found a piece with a really cool looking Santa. The problem was he was in the bottom right corner of the page, and I knew if I folded a book  normally about all we would see of him would be his belt.

So I had a little conversation with myself, 
"Self, what if you built a word ladder so the letters stair stepped up to the right and left plenty of room for Santa to peek out?" 
"Would that work?" I answered.
"Well, you won't know until you try."
"Good point. You gonna eat that?"
"No, those gummy bears on the countertop."
"They look really good and I do need a snack."
"I won't tell. Just leave a few in the bag. Maybe Captain America won't notice that there are a bunch gone."

Ok, enough of that conversation. Anyway, here's the result of the experiment.

I think he turned out great! Peeking out from that corner...

giving me the I-know-how-many-gummy-bears-should-be-in-that-bag stare.

Monday, November 12, 2012

You've Got Mail!

Look what I got! The first attagirl for Reading With Scissors from a real customer.

Linda sent me this picture of the Blessings book sitting on her mantle. I love the way it looks next to her other books and book ends. And by love I mean I think I'll ask Linda to take pictures of all my books.

A blessing indeed!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Halloween is Over. It Must Be Christmas.

With all the wedding festivities, I haven't had much time to fold many books, but I did get these on Etsy this week.

Here's my last Thanksgiving entry for this season. 

For lo these many years my family has met in the Dallas-Fort Worth area for Thanksgiving. But met is really not the right word. We gather. Some, like yours truly, drive north from deep in the heart of Texas. Others drive south from the mother country of Oklahoma. Some, like my cousin who offers her home to all of us, already live in the DFW area. 

I like that word--gather. It evokes the sound of hymns and prayers and laughter and family, all in six little letters.

Some of you may recognize the glittery end papers on this book. They were a runner-up in the Blessings contest, running a close race to the eventual winner, Thanksgiving paisley.

And here is my first Christmas book. I like its old-fashioned font.

My mom taught me at a very early age to love stories--especially hers. Twas... is the beginning to every story. The possibilities are limitless. Twas the night before Christmas, obviously, especially with these endpapers featuring a vintage Santa, but it could just as easily be Twas a dark and stormy night..., or Twas brillig and the slithy toves..., or Twas in the moon of wintertime... 

Twas..., you hear that word and realize that you're taking the first step on a long adventure, you take a deep breath, and you lose yourself in a story or a million stories.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

I'm a Mother-in-Law!

My baby got married this weekend. My baby got married this weekend.

Maybe if I say it enough times it will seem real.

My baby got married this weekend.

The great news is I love my new daughter-in-law! Not only is she beautiful, talented, and in love with my son, but she and her mom know how to throw a wedding. From the venue, to the flowers, to the dresses, to the cakes--it was all stunning.

And you know why I love her even more? She asked me to help decorate the sweets table. Flattery will get her everywhere.

Wedding colors were cranberry and gray, so her grandmother and I teamed up to make a matching confectionary fairy tale. The table was covered in hot tamales, pop rocks, sugared cherry candy, red licorice, and more all in gorgeous crystal and glass containers. My job, of course, was to make stuff with books because that's my best thing. Actually, it's my only thing.

My friend, Debbie, tells me decorating should always have a theme so picking one was my first task. I decided to go with "A Storybook Love," because, well, it was about books. I started by making a banner.

I downloaded a really cool font called Matador and printed out the letters on some of Barb's dictionary pagesI cut them out and outlined them with silver cardstock and then glued them on some sparkly tags that I made. A length of twine, some tiny clothespins, and voila!
... the banner you see below.

Next, I made some kusudama flowers from Winston dictionary pages with a cranberry jewel in each center and placed them in a tall red vase for another pop of color. We added some lighted branches for effect.

Then I folded a couple of books, of course. Mr & Mrs. in this case set on cake plates and flanking the flowers.

And finally I printed a sweet sentiment on another dictionary page, attached a picture of the happy couple, and framed it in silver.

I'm so happy to have been part of the decorations. Thrilled! The whole evening was magical!

Hey, did I tell you? My baby got married this weekend!