Who likes to swim in the winter? A Labrador Retriever of course! Diesel has been swimming up a storm this past month as we train for the Junior Hunt test and I managed to remember to bring my camera yesterday. :) The water is so cold but my Dies with that great double coat doesn't even notice.
Hello all! Are you enjoying some holiday time? I sure am. Love it. I need to take a break more often. :P This is really fun!
First things first, we are doing something very important over at the CHF Be Creative Blog. We are giving some serious previews of the new sets from the Kim Hughes Collection to be introduced for Winter CHA '09. We are already 4 days in and are sharing projects with new images all the way to release day on January 6th. Get over there and make sure you scroll down through the last few posts.
I got to have some play time during the holidays as well and wanted to share a design with the new Thomas Kinkade image called A Perfect Yellow Rose being released on December 30th. I colored the image with Pebbles chalks and then covered it with double-sided tape and a type of clear glitter. The results IRL are spectacular! Photographs never do glitter justice do they?
Ever the contrarian, I colored this Perfect Yellow Rose image in PINK! *giggles*
I wanted to just keep this design super simple to show of this amazing stamp, no competition!
Here's a close up:
I really enjoyed working with this stamp just this first time and have many more technique ideas brewing. But for now, I am off to read my book.
Training Diesel for his first dog show! LOL As if I don't have enough to do right? Here's the story...
Mark (my DH) wants a dog for his 30th birthday. He's always wanted a Lab. Really? That big dog in the house? Can't we get something smaller? Nope. A Lab is the right dog for us. Hmmmmm, ok then - you are so supportive of all of my crazy plans so a Lab it is. What color? He says yellow. I say black. He says, DONE!
I knew that this dog needed to be integrated well into our family, to be well trained so that he could travel and just be part of our daily lives without having to "worry" about him and what he was doing. Training was key. It became obvious quickly that of course, *I* am the one with him the vast majority of the time, as I work from home.
Those who know me well will chuckle at this, but you all may not know that I don't do anything without a desirable purpose or outcome at the end. I have to have something to work towards or....BORING. No thanks. Accomplishment motivates me.
The dog show...I am getting there, I promise.
I mention to my breeder that The Dies and I need something to do. Something to work towards. Most Lab sports can not be started until they are around 18 months old so that you don't damage those growing bones and joints - big dogs that grow fast need a little extra care with exercise early on. Hmmmm. Is he good enough to show? Would we just be embarrassing ourselves? He was sold as a pet, not a show prospect. Shelley, the breeder assures me once she sees him again at 7 months old that we certainly would not be embarrassing ourselves! Cool. Something to do.
Next, onto obedience classes. I had been doing lots of things at home and feeling my way, but we needed some help if we wanted to be in a show ring in 6 weeks. Loose lead walking being the big one. Lucky for me, the President of the BC Lab Club lives just a few minutes away and she holds classes - bonus!
Fast forward to this past weekend. We entered our first All Breed Show! There were lots of Labs entered but it turned out that none of them were in our class. :( The classes ended up being the perfect introduction for us to the show ring! We came home with all sorts of ribbons which has become the joke of the weekend for my DH. I would arrive home after the class to the following: Did you win? Why, yes! Good for you! Were you the only dog again? YEP!! *giggles* We even won Winners Dog. No points though of course, you actually have to compete against other animals to get points. Well dang.
The weekend was perfect because it gave me the experience to really know what I need to work on in the handling department and what he needs to work on to show himself off a little better. We did get some very encouraging feedback from a judge who has been judging for 40 years. He was willing to spend some time with me after my class to critique Diesel and give me some pointers too. His advice and thoughts were invaluable in terms of giving me encouragement to go forward. You just never know when you really might impact someone's life with your knowledge. If someone asks you a question and is genuinely *trying* to improve, spend time with them. I do this all the time at stamping demos and I have seen that it really does impact people if you are willing to share a bit of a piece of yourself. Those 20 minutes he chatted with me were easily worth all of the money I spent this weekend 10 fold.
Now, I did take a few pictures of our breeder showing her Fergie, who is preggers. :) So excited to see some new puppies soon. I forgot to ask anyone to snap a picture of us though. ;)
I started this post talking about horses too. I showed Quarter Horses for 13 years which is why showing Diesel was not such a big leap for me. I managed to find two OLD pictures of my first horse Jane and I. Her registered name was Tivio Cat Balou which I always thought was so pretty. After I finished up the classes this weekend I found myself reminiscing about my days showing horses and even called my old trainer just to catch up. Amazing how strongly our memories from childhood remain clear isn't it?
In this first photo I am around eleven years old, we had just placed 2nd in a very large English Showmanship class - I think there were over 25 entries:
In this photo I am 13, same horse. It was taken at my grandparent's farm, which is now owned by my parents.
Finally, this is me at 15 with Romeo (Ebony San Pep) who was a half brother to my Jane:
And there you have it. The Dog and Pony Show. My dear friend Jules keeps asking me about "The Dog and Pony Show" as she has dubbed it! She's a hoot, that Jules.
Are you still with me after that rambling? Ha! Thanks for taking a trip down memory lane with me. *mwah*
Sorry that I don't have a fresh design with this set today, but I do have some Thomas Kinkade Christmas cards that would be quick and easy to create in mass. There is a story behind this sketch.
I was toodling around on Splitcoaststampers one day and came across a fantastic Kinkade card by Elyssa Blair. Here is her card: Cherish Today. I have been wanting to share with you for a few months (yes, months...bad Mona), how well the Ranger Adirondack Pigment Inkswork with the detailed Kinkade images.
The CHF gals have created an AMAZING gallery full of inspiration for this gorgeous wintry combo of stamps...and the best part? It's only $6.99 cling mounted and $10.99 wood mounted for both the branch and sentiment! Thank you CHF! :)
You *have* to go see the gallery. Please. Just do it. Okay?
I can't wait to go see what the other CHF girls have done for the Backgrounder Challenge this minoring! I love playing along with Challenges but don't get to do it as much as I used to. What a treat. :-)
My second design for you uses only part of a Backgrounder where I created a small piece of custom patterned paper.
I also played along with the weekend CHF Color Challenge with this card- Papaya Puree Dark, Vanilla Cream and Tawny Medium Prism Paper.(...and giving you a sneak of the new Kim Hughes Set called Sweet Spring.)
The Hexagon Tiles Backgrounder was colored with Copic Markers to match my project!
Just wanted to say hello and let you know that I am still alive and kicking!
Guess what I have been doing? Taking care of my family and managing the 14 art lines at CHF! That's enough to keep this little lady hoppin'. I have also been preparing to teach in Vancouver next weekend at the BC Creative Expo. If you are in the area I seriously encourage you to come out to this event! There are awesome classes and lots of fun crafty shopping to be had. :)
There are still some spaces in my get inky and painty and messy with Ranger classes as well as a class that will you have feeling like a pro with the Thomas Kinkade stamps. There are going to be some fun surprises in my classes. *wink* Click here to learn more.