Sunday, May 31, 2009


Hello! I absolutely love paper crafting; well, almost any type of art form. I teach classes at Forever Memories in Ozark, Missouri. But, that sounds so businesslike because I LOVE the people at Forever Memories; from the owner, Debbie, to the people who attend my classes. They aren't just students, they are my friends and each one of them comes with their own unique personalities and special talents. From Nancy who always doubts her ability (and she shouldn't because she does beautiful work) to Shirley who just has that inate sense of style. Then there is Helen who has been my buddy for years and started this artistic journey with me a couple of years ago. And Jeanne, who is an incredibly witty lady, encourages and inspires me everyday. I have made friendships at Forever Memories that will last a lifetime. If you've never been there, you need to go. It's a quaint little store that specializes in what I like to call a vintage and heirloom style of paper crafting. We like to take something brand new and make it look like it's been quietly sitting in your grandma's old trunk in the attic; tucked away and forgotten. We love t!m Holtz and his products and techniques. But, we also love all sorts of art and don't limit ourselves to scrapbook page layouts or the run of the mill stuff. I love to experiment with all sorts of art forms and Forever Memories encourages me to do that. From the minute you walk in the door, you feel like "family". That's what we're all about.
I took a few days away from my Forever Memories family to attend what I have to say was
one of the most amazing artistic experiences of my life!! I attended a two day class with the incredible SUZE WEINBERG!! What a talent!!! What a lady!!!

Suze is an amazing talent and well ... just an amazing human being. My friend, Helen and I attended her classes and were fortunate enough to take her to dinner after our first day of classes. I found Suze to be a charming lady with a wonderful sense of humor. One of my favorite things she said is "I am so unimpressed with me!" That totally sums up Suze. For all of her celebrity, she is the most down to earth, real person you'd ever want to meet. She posted our classes on her blog. I love her blog and follow it. She always has great techniques and great stories to share.

During our two days of classes, we learned some awesome techniques using Suze's Melting Pot, beeswax and UTEE (ultra thick embossing enamel) to make beautiful pieces. In our first morning session, we made exquisite little frames that started out as blank wood but ended up looking like little masterpieces of some sort of tile. It's amazing what a little beeswax and a paper napkin can do! This example is the one Suze made.

In the afternoon session, we started learning about UTEE. This stuff is incredible! The possibilities are endless! We heated clear UTEE and made beautiful little pieces that, by simply adding a pin back or bale can be interesting, unique little pendants or pieces of jewelry. Then we added a little To Dye For to tint the UTEE and colorize it. The effects are stunning! Add a little "bling" and it even adds more interest! These can also be used to embellish your papercrafting pieces, frames ... the list goes on and on. Here are the ones I made in class and Suze even featured them on her blog!!

MOLD N POUR ... one of my new favorite things!! This stuff is the coolest stuff ever and has definitely expanded my artistic world! You can take virtually anything that is solid and make an instant mold out of it to create some absolutely beautiful pieces. We molded charms, buttons, old handles, little statues ... again, the possibilities are endless. This technique makes me look at the world around me in a whole new way! Suze said that she ALWAYS has some Mold N Pour with her so she can mold something she sees that is cool. NOW I understand that!!! I just keep looking at stuff and thinking "that would be a cool mold!" What do you do with all these molds? Glad you asked!! After you make a mold (which takes less than 10 minutes), you pour hot UTEE into it and create a new art piece to be added to you projects. We used black UTEE to pour into our newly created molds. Then we added a little Perfect Pearls for some color. Using colored UTEE also makes beautiful little pieces and adding Perfect Pearls for that extra little "umpfh" just finishes them off!! These are the pieces I made in class. I think they look like a faux raku. Suze said she really liked them and I was flattered that she posted them to her blog.


My friend and owner of Stampers Ink, Tanya hosted this awesome experience. Her store is fabulous! She is NOT a scrapbook store. She is a stamp and art store with some scrapbook papers thrown in. Her store is located in Shawnee, Kansas. It is about three hours from here. It's not far from Lees Summit (my old stomping grounds). If you are ever in her vicinity, you JUST HAVE to stop in and check out Stampers Ink. You won't be dissapointed. You also need to check out her blog so you can keep up with all her new products and class schedules. She offers classes featuring everything from budding artists and designers to the "Big Leaguers" like Suze!! She has Wendy Vecchi coming in September! WooHoo!!

Friday, May 15, 2009

Hello and welcome to my blog. I would love to introduce you to the loves of my life … my three precious grandsons, Cameron, Cooper and Caden. In case you couldn’t tell, the “bookends” are twins. These three sweet little spirits have given me more joy than I could have ever imagined. Each time little Cooper runs to me, stretching out his little arms and says "Mimi, pick up" my heart just melts. Every time the twins crawl over to me and pull up on my legs and look up at me with those big beautiful crystal blue eyes, I realize that I have an even greater sense of purpose in my life ... to be the best "Mimi" I can be and to make memories that will last a lifetime; mine and theirs'.