Friday, November 29, 2013

Cricut The Mix and Match button

This tutorial comes from Fantabulous Cricut Challenge Blog.
 Thursday Tutorial: The Mix and Match button & how to use it!
This weeks tutorial is on the mix & match button you find on the Cricut Expression. Recently I was doing a project where I could have really, really used this feature-making it easier on myself and saving frustration. I used to use mix & match a lot, and slowly forgot about it. Let's review its use with Megan at Above Rubies Studio!

Mix and Match button-
•Allows you to use multiple Creative Features at the same time.
This is trickier…the order you select the buttons matters!
•Press Mix and Match
•Next the character you want to cut and then Creative Feature on the keypad

*Character then feature key*
You can only choose one dial size even in mix and match. If you want different sizes, you need to cut and then change the dial size.

 This tutorial is a great memory refresher, with a bunch of cool tips!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Just a Little Chit Chat While I'm Working on My Next Crafty Post

This isn't a crafty post I am afraid. I am working on a good one full of photos but in the mean time, I thought I would share a story so I can post a photo that made me laugh so hard I almost peed my pants.

My poor Maine Coon.  I have two long haired, but one is an albino and he has been itching and licking much more than usual so his beautiful long white coat is now fashioned like a poodle.  It is too pathetic to post a photo and I don't want anyone to think I am neglecting my animal.  I am not. I adore my kitties.

He is still super playful, cuddly and eating just fine.  He isn't depressed and while we have had our share of drama in the Isaacs' household recently, I don't think he is stressed out.  I know it isn't ring worm because the location is off, plus his brother is just fine.  Because of this, I decided that before I took him to the vet, I'd talk to my guy at Petsmart.  As usual, he was super helpful.  We are looking at 2 things:
  1. At the time the licking increased I made a couple changes.  One was that I bought a different brand of cat food and it wasn't the fancy stuff.  I was out of food and it was late so I went to Walgreens and bought a bag from their limited selection.  It could be that White Kitty is having a reaction to the wheat- yes its weird, but he may be Gluten intolerant. (Btw- his name is Paris but I like White Kitty better.  His brother is an orange Maine Coon named Bo and I call him... [surprise!] Orange Kitty.  My kids hate it but IMHO my names are really sweet, very enduring and authentic to who they are as individuals...but I digress.)  So I bought the rice based food in hopes that it will help.  We will have to wait and see.
  2. The other change was that I bought the Costco flea treatment generic for Frontline.  It was $50 cheaper and I like other Kirkland products so I thought it would be OK. Petsmart guy said a number of his customers have had trouble with it.  Unfortunately, we just treated the cats last week thinking an allergic reaction to fleas could be the culprit so I have to wait another 3 weeks before I can start using the Frontline again. 
That being the case, Petsmart guy suggested a nice Oatmeal based shampoo until the new food kicked in and the new flea treatment could be used.  The shampoo was $15. I passed because I knew if I googled it, I could find a homemade recipe. Amazingly, there were many to choose from.  I love the internet! This is the one I think I will try

Which gets me to the photo I stumbled upon that lead to this little ramble...  Ta Da....
This made me laugh out loud. I just had to share it.  That is all.;o)

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Brief Absence Extended By Job Related Injury

I guess most jobs have a risk of injury. Desk jobs have ergonomic issues. Bakers have more oven related risks. Electricians might get electrocuted. Even a mailman is at risk of dog bites.

The crafter also has potential job related risks like getting burnt by a glue gun or in my case, cutting themselves with a craft knife. Unfortunately, just a week after after my son recovered from his nearly 2 month battle with a bone infection, I amputated the pad off of my index finger. There are cuts, there are deep cuts, there is severing, and then there is the amputation where the area removed will not grow back, nor can it be reattached. The latter was what happened to me.

I was rushing to teach a Create and Innovate family class in which we where painting pumpkins and creating "inchie collages." I needed to cut poster board and it wouldn't fit in my trimmer, so I used my T-square and Exacto knife. I was cutting through multiple sheets, so I put in a new blade. I miscalculated my finger positioning in my haste and sliced off the front of my left index finger; the pad. The cut removed almost all of the meat (for lack of a better word), bled like you would not believe and hurt like a 4 alarm fire. There are sooooooooo many nerve endings on the pad and every last one was screaming its head off!

Fast forward 7 weeks, and I am still unable to use my left hand for a majority of tasks. I can't dig in my purse for keys, use my left hand to rub in shampoo, put my hair in french braids, button tight jeans, seal a zip lock bag, etc, etc.

I feel ridiculous using such a serious, dramatic tone about this injury. "I cut my finger", "I can't type by touch anymore", "whaa, whaa, whaaa!"
It just sounds so silly. One does not realize how the index finger leads the use of the hand. When the brain tells the hand to move the fingers, the index finger is the captain of the team. You might send signals that say "everybody but the index", but the index will go regardless. In many ways, it has left me without a left hand, and even now, it still hurts like a bad burn when it comes into contact with anything. The cast is helpful but it inhibits healing so the Dr. doesn't want me to wear it unless I am doing an activity that will inevitably cause contact with my finger.

I have adjusted to getting things done without touching the pad area and am more patient with myself.  It is what it is and I'm told it will take 6 months before it doesn't scream when I hit it.  My finger print is gone so if I want to start doing 1 finger theft, I could do OK.  I'll always have a deformed looking finger profile-  I can live with that.  My biggest boo hoo is that I won't ever get feeling back in that area and the index finger is a major instrument for experiencing touch.  That sucks.  But, when using a glue gun it could be an advantageous.

So that is my story.  I hate that I left my blog unattended. I always find it frustrating when I follow a blog and then they stop posting. I really don't mean to be flakey- I just found myself bogged down with a bunch of excuses.
- Everything takes me so much longer to do so I find myself with very little free time - folding clothes, doing dishes, making lunches, sweeping the floor...even now these tasks are a challenge and take forever.
-Typing is difficult -right now I am pecking and my brain is moving much faster then my hands.
-I have been a little depressed and overwhelmed - my inner dialogue has been very negative and frustrated.

Valid as these reasons are, I don't feel good about disappearing as I did and want to apologize to my readers and Fantabulous Cricut Challenge Blog.

On a more positive note... I did continue to work during this time. I had a commitment to teach 4 classes a month and I needed the moo-la so I took care of business.  I had a lot of help!  I created a couple of fun projects.  Below are photos of the haunted house I taught in October.

I also have pics of the kids making their houses.  They turned out AWESOME!!  I'll post more photos this week now that I'm back in the saddle.  I look forward to reconnecting with you and look forward to crafting together!